By PSS | Posted: Sunday January 29, 2017
Many 18-year-olds are more than happy to sit at home during their school holidays. Not Aidan Murdoch – he’d rather give his time to the residents at Peacehaven Village.
What started as a way to receive a subsidy on dental work, has become a passion for 18-year-old Aidan Murdoch who is now a regular volunteer at Invercargill’s Peacehaven Village.
The former Aurora College pupil started volunteering at the retirement village in October; needing to complete 30 hours of community work to receive assistance to pay for braces through the Wish for a Smile Trust.
Aidan completed his 30 hours with Peacehaven’s maintenance department – and then he was hooked.
“I found I really liked the place and realised I’d have a lot of free time with upcoming school holidays, so decided to make it a longer term arrangement,” he said.
Since then Aidan has come into Peacehaven most days during his holidays; working with the activities team, assisting residents wherever he can, and generally putting a smile on residents’ faces.
“I like being able to help people out; I feel like I’m contributing to something rather than sitting at home wasting my time,” he said.
“I find the older generation so interesting and really good company.”
Aidan says he would highly recommend volunteering in a rest home to any young person. Residents thoroughly enjoy his company; and although they “crack the whip” and keep him in line, they are always up for a bit of fun, he says.
“I thought volunteering would be a difficult process but it’s as simple as a phone call or an email.”
This year he starts a law degree at the University of Otago, minoring in psychology, and intends to return to volunteering at Peacehaven in his semester breaks.
“I’ve realised this may even be a potential career path for me, should uni not work out,” he says.
If you would like to volunteer at an Enliven rest home, or for home-based support service SupportLink, please email firstname.lastname@example.org
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