AGE is nothing but a number to Coolum's Fay Beutel. At 82, she is still working to help others, now in a volunteering role.
A 25 year career as Canteen Supervisor at the Royal Brisbane Hospital while raising her three sons has held her in good stead for her role now as a Meal on Wheels Volunteer.
For the past 19 years she has spread her good cheer and work ethic with Coolum Meals on Wheels and she strongly believes this is what keeps her well as she goes into old age.
"Volunteering combats loneliness by keeping you in regular contact with others who are committed to making their community a better place live," Krystyna Blaszczyk, Marketing & Media, Volunteering Sunshine Coast said.
"It is one of the best ways to make new friends. It strengthens your ties to the community and broadens your support network, exposing you to people and organisations with common interests, neighbourhood resources, fun and fulfilling activities.
"While some people are naturally outgoing, others are shy and have a hard time meeting new people. Volunteering increases self confidence, and can provide a healthy boost to self-esteem and life satisfaction."
Studies have found that people who volunteer have a lower mortality rate, show less symptoms of chronic pain or heart disease. The better you feel about yourself, the more likely you are to have a positive view of your life and future goals.
"I have been a volunteer with Meals on Wheels at Coolum for 19 years now and believe that keeping active and involved with our community has been good for my physical and mental health," Fay said.
"Throughout the years of volunteering I have made and retained some very close and long-term friendships. This is because we all shared a bond related to helping others.
"I am involved in the delivery of meals, as a "jocky" not a driver, this is the person who takes the meal into the client's home. It is much more than just dropping off a meal/ For some clients we are the only regular/familiar face they get to see that day. I will often have a good lengthy chat to ensure other aspects of their life are running smoothly.
"Volunteering works both ways. It allows you to connect to your community making it a better place, particularly for those living in isolation. However, volunteering can help you as much as the course you choose to help.
"During my time as a volunteer I made new friends, boosted my social skills and I remain mentally and physically active. I recommend volunteering to anyone, especially if you feel lonely or isolated."
Volunteering Sunshine Coast has over 140 non-for-profit organisations as members who are constantly seeking people for a variety of volunteer positions right across the Sunshine Coast.
They will match your skills and interests to a suitable position within your home area and if you are seeking to further your skills and experience they offer training and guidance in a field of your choice.
For further information: Volunteering Sunshine Coast on 54438256.