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9 Ways to Have Good Fun While Doing Good

Home > Brisbane > Charity | Cheap | Free | Fun Things To Do | Volunteering | Lists
by Kiesten McCauley (subscribe)
I'm a freelance creative. People and companies pay me to write ads, scripts, websites, marketing and corporate documents. I also produce and direct ads, podcasts and stuff. See some of my work or hire me here: https://kiesten.wixsite.com/portfolio
Published February 21st 2015
You Donít Need a Lot of $ to Have Fun, Just a Lot of Heart
Having fun things to do in your spare time doesn't have to cost a lot of money. In fact, there are many fun ways to spend your leisure hours without spending a cent, all while helping make the world a better place. Here are nine ideas to get you started...

quocka, reading, quota, volunteers
L-R Karen, Allison, Martin and Moya at the Launch of QuoCKa Reading at Berrinba East State School


1. QuoCKa Reading

What
Quota, Cops 'n' Kids, Reading Together or QuoCKa promotes literacy and builds a sense of community among children who may come from at risk or low socio-economic areas.

You don't have to be a member of Quota
or the police force to volunteer, you'll just need a Blue Card (Quota can help you organise this). Volunteers read stories and gift books supplied by QuoCKa to the children. For some children, this might be the first book they ever own and their first experience of an adult reading to them.

When
During school terms, the program operates for 30 minutes a week at a time suitable to each individual school.

Where
Some of the schools benefiting from the program are: Eagleby State School, Eagleby South State School, Beenleigh State School, Berinba East State School, Waterford West State School, Edens Landing State School, and Windaroo State School.

Why
You love reading. You want to contribute to the positive development of children. You like to see the constructive effects of your volunteering in person. You'd like to volunteer for something that gets you out of the house once a week.

How
If you have any queries about the project, please contact Moya McKeon, Quota International Beenleigh Inc., PO Box 34 Beenleigh Ph. 3382 7604 E: moyamckeon@gmail.com.

2. Community Gardens

What
Community Gardens create a sense of community and bring people who love gardening together. Often times these gardens grow food crops and the community is able to share the fresh produce.

When
Community Gardens operate all year long and you can commit as much or as little time as you please to many gardens.

Where
There are a wide variety of locations. Check the link in the 'How' section to find one close to you.

Why
You may be a novice wanting to learn more or an experienced green thumb. You enjoy getting in touch with nature. You love to see the (literal) fruits of your labour. You'd like to teach your kids to garden.

How
Find your local community garden here, or if you live outside of Brisbane contact your local council to find out about community gardens in your area.

polly, rescue, cat, animal, shelter, volunteer
I Adopted Queen Polly Jean Purrypants Last Year. She got a Second Chance at a Fur-ever Home Thanks to RSPCA Volunteers.


3. Animal Shelters

What
Animal shelters need all kinds of volunteers, from people to help in the office, to dog walkers, kitten cuddlers, vets, foster carers and animal experts. There are many shelters to choose from and many levels of commitment.

When
You can get involved in helping animals in need any time of the year. There are even opportunities for children and young people to get involved.

Where
You can choose your nearest local shelter, or become a foster carer and help out from your own home.

Why
You love animals and they love you. You believe every animal deserves a second chance at a happy fur-ever home. You're studying to be a vet or vet nurse and would like hands on experience with animals. You'd love a pet of your own but your current accommodation won't allow for it.

How
Get in touch with your local animal shelter. There are heaps to choose from. Some specialise on one particular type or breed of animal, while others care for all animals in need. Here's a short list of options, but there are plenty more out there: RSPCA, Animal Welfare Queensland, 4 Paws Animal Rescue, and Animal Angels Rescue.

big, day, out, music, festival, volunteer
Some of the Crowd at the Gold Coast Big Day Out


4. Music Festivals

What
Did you know that just about every music festival relies on volunteers to run smoothly? Most will exchange a one day ticket for about four hours of your work. You'll also often be supplied with food and drink and an event T-shirt.

When
Festivals run all year 'round, not just in the summer months. You're best to make contact with a festival several months out from the event date/s to ensure you make it onto their volunteer list.

Where
Everywhere! The Gold Coast and Brisbane are popular locations, but there are also plenty of festivals that happen further afield.

Why
You love live music and meeting other music fans. You enjoy working outdoors. You have special skills such as experience with sound gear or setting up stages, food handling, people skills or you're a good organiser.

How
Get in touch with the organisers of your chosen festival or festivals to find out what kind of volunteers they need and if you fit the bill.

5. The Transformers Choir

What
The Transformers is a choir made up of disadvantaged people such as those with a disability or who are homeless.

When
Rehearsals rake place weekly, for 40 weeks each year. Performances are at a variety of venues and events.

Where
The rehearsal space is in Windsor, just north of Brisbane.

Why
You enjoy music and singing. You like meeting new people. Or perhaps you'd like to get involved with catering for the lunch which occurs at the end of each rehearsal.

How
You can get in touch with Transformers Manager Mike Meade on 0412 167 251 or email mike.meade@reclink.org to find out about current volunteering opportunities.

get, up, political, volunteer, kiesten
Yours Truly Volunteering for Get Up! During the Last Election


6. Get Up!

What
Here's one for the people who would love to get into a political movement but don't want to be associated with one particular party. GetUp! is politically independent and works to get the voices of everyday Australians heard by government. Its aim is to bring power to the people and foster real democracy.

When
Get Up! has campaigns running all year long on a variety of issues. Some examples of past actions include: Protect the Great Barrier Reef, Standing up for Refugees and Asylum Seekers, and Australians for Climate Action to name a few.

Where
There are a variety of ways to get involved, some from your own home, others from an actual event location or a GetUp! office.

Why
You'd like to make a positive difference to the way the country is run without becoming affiliated with a political party. You want to keep politicians to their words. You're somehow unhappy with how the country is being run and want your voice to be heard.

How
Email volunteer@getup.org.au with your phone number and unique skill set.

7. Radio Stations

What
There are a few community radio stations around that rely on volunteers to keep them running. 4ZZZ, 4EB and 107.3 are just some that spring to mind.

When
Community radio needs help from volunteers 24/7, 365 days a year.

Where
Some are Brisbane based, however other community stations operate out of suburban studios.

Why
You enjoy music and/or news. You'd like work experience in this field. You believe in the ethos of your chosen community radio station.

How
Get in touch with your community radio station to find out what kinds of volunteer roles they have to fill. There are roles like admin and office work, programming and announcing and more.

baked, relief, baking, volunteer
Some of the Baking I did that Went to Hardworking SES Volunteers


8. Baked Relief

What
When severe flooding hit Queensland in 2010-2011, food blogger Danielle Crismani decided to use her culinary skills to help. She posted about her decision to bake some goodies to deliver to the hardworking volunteers, and before Danielle knew it, she was inundated with offers from people on Facebook and Twitter who wanted to offer help in the form of baked goods too. That's how Baked Relief organically sprang into existence and it's still going strong to date.

When
Aside from spontaneous acts of baked help during times of natural disaster, Baked Relief now runs campaigns such as The Lockyer Valley & FNQ New Beginnings, Cookbook Drives, Love to the West, and Christmas in July to support Queensland families affected by drought, flood, cyclone and disaster.

Where
Drop off points are often in and around Brisbane and SEQ. Your baked goods will be distributed to the places that need them most from there.

Why
You love to bake big batches of goodies. You're the type of person who shows their love for others by cooking for them. You love to bake but you're on a diet. You want to help a charity but can't spend a lot of time away from your home.

How
If you want to get involved, keep an eye on the latest Baked Relief campaigns on social media or get in touch with Danielle over email.
Facebook Like: www.facebook.com/bakedrelief
Twitter Follow: #bakedrelief #lovetothewest @bakedrelief @digellabakes
Email: digella@gmail.com

9. Coach or Referee a Sport

What
There are a myriad sporting teams and groups in every school and suburb. Each one usually relies on volunteers to coach and referee teams and games.

When
Junior sports usually run throughout school terms, however adult sports groups usually offer year-round opportunities for volunteers to get involved.

Where
Everywhere!

Why
You love sport. You want to stay fit and active. You enjoy meeting new people and getting out of the house.

How
Get in touch with your local sporting groups to find out how you can help.
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Why? You Want to Make a Positive Difference
When: All Year Long
Phone: Get in touch with organisations via the links in the article
Where: Various Locations
Cost: Most are Free or Very Cheap
Your Comment
You are spot on, so many things to do and money isn't everything
by Steve Hudson (score: 3|1238) 973 days ago
Great collection of less known ways of volunteering and helping out Kiesten. (I do feel you should have cut the pollie out of the selfie photo. WEN articles shouldn't be seen to be endorsing particular political parties). But that is a small point for future improvement in an otherwise excellent article. Love the title!
by Jenny Rossiter (score: 3|3750) 973 days ago
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