‘I love giving back’: Volunteers share passion for Rotary Camberwell Sunday Market
Article posted: June 27, 2023
As you enter the Rotary Camberwell Sunday Market, you’ll be met by the friendly faces of Rotary volunteers.
The Rotarians not only assist with collecting gold coin donations made by market-goers, but also help with putting those donations to good use – in the local community, and more broadly across Australia and overseas.
They often assist with bringing local causes and projects to life, through targeted activities at their respective Rotary clubs, to ensure that people in need get the help they require.
There’s a great sense of team work and coming together to make a difference among Rotary’s volunteers.
Here, they share what they enjoy about volunteering and why they love helping out each week at the Rotary Camberwell Sunday Market.
Kyle Wightman and Nick Pane: ‘Great camaraderie’ and ‘people from all walks of life’
Kyle Wightman has been a member of Canterbury Rotary for 29 years, and he has assisted at the Rotary Camberwell Sunday Market for at least 15 years.
“There’s the giving back to the community and involvement in the community; it’s always great to be part of it,” he said.
“I originally joined because I was less involved in community as I was travelling all the time with my job. So, I reached a point where I wanted to cut the travel, change my job, and get involved in the community.”
He said it was important for him to give back and contribute to his local community.
“There’s also a camaraderie associated with it. Canterbury Rotary has always had a strong emphasis on it… and enjoying doing things together and socialising.”
Nick Pane has been a member of Camberwell Rotary for 15 years and is a regular volunteer at the Rotary Camberwell Sunday Market.
One thing that he enjoys most about helping out at the market is the different people he gets to meet.
“I enjoy the interaction with the wide diversity of people that attend the market; there’s people from all walks of life that come here,” he said.
Mr Pane also likes being part of the community.
“What we’re doing is raising funds for all sorts of great causes that Rotary is involved in,” he said.
Geoff Steinicke: ‘I like doing good in the world’
Geoff Steinicke has been a member with North Balwyn Rotary since 1980. As a Rotary volunteer, he likes the opportunity to give back to people in need.
“I’ve always been interested in doing good in the world. I find a lot of people with a similar interest at Rotary,” he said.
“We run programs to raise funds to spend them on projects that need funds. For instance, at the moment we are collecting all sorts of household items for Afghan and Ukrainian communities over at Noble Park and Dandenong.
“We also do fundraising for international [projects] – we’ve got villages in north Vietnam that need help, so some of our members go over there regularly and each of us has a child that we support.”
When helping out at the Rotary Camberwell Sunday Market, Mr Steinicke enjoys meeting fellow Rotary club volunteers and sharing new ideas.
“Everyone at the Rotary club is a good friend. It’s good community vibes,” he said.
Rosemary Waghorne: ‘I like contributing to the causes’
Rosemary Waghorne started volunteering with Rotary in 2009. She is a member of Canterbury Rotary club and helps out at the Rotary Camberwell Sunday Market regularly.
“I volunteer because we do good stuff. I like contributing to the causes, the community,” she said.
“One of our biggest projects is called ‘For A Meal’ where we pack emergency food packs for people in disaster areas. We distributed 100,000 meals during the COVID lockdowns around Melbourne, for instance.”
Ms Waghorne said she enjoys helping with different community projects and assisting people in need.
“There’s so many different areas of the community that we help – it’s international, it’s national and it’s local,” she said.
As someone who comes from a family of passionate volunteers, she said she wanted to continue that legacy.