Client Service Manager, Patrick Murch, shares his love for volunteering
"Giving back to the community does not need to be highly visible for it to be meaningful."
Being of service runs in my blood. Growing up in a family in the armed forces, and my Dad a volunteer in the coast guard, I’ve always felt there’s more we can be doing at work and in the community. Volunteering is a great way to give back, keep occupied, socialise and meet new, interesting people that can help shape a broader perspective on life.
I love to share my knowledge and skills in different ways to help people. For example, I’m a volunteer with the NSW State Emergency Service; and at work, I’ve just become an Allianz First Aider. Another volunteer program I’m very proud to be involved in is Life Lab: Money. It’s a mentoring program between Allianz and the Cerebral Palsy Alliance Australia which seeks to equip young people with disabilities with the skills, confidence and knowledge to more effectively manage their finances.
I was excited to get involved because I saw the program as a way that I could utilise my professional expertise and personal experience to help a group of young people who face incomprehensible challenges every day. The participants, aged between 19 and 25 years, are all studying, working, or actively looking for work while moving towards financial independence. We start with basic concepts of financial literacy such as what paper money looks like and budgeting for day-to-day items, risks with credit cards and loans and how to have financial conversations with their family. It’s been a really rewarding experience and has helped build confidence in my leadership. Seeing them grow their financial literacy and knowing I’ve helped make a profound difference to them gives me a warm fuzzy feeling.
My experience really highlighted to me that there are so many organisations like Cerebral Palsy Alliance and other community-based initiatives that need the support of individuals with a variety of skills to continue making a difference to people who rely on the life-changing services these groups provide. I’m really grateful that initiatives like the partnership we have with the Cerebral Palsy Alliance allows us to capitalise on the diverse abilities of Allianz employees and demonstrates that giving back to the community does not need to be highly visible for it to be meaningful.
It would be great to see more business utilising the untapped talent of their workforce to support community-based volunteer organisations like Allianz does.