About the program
The Community Visitors Scheme (CVS) program is funded by the Department of Social Services (DSS). The program serves culturally and linguistically diverse (CALD) residents, who may be isolated by limited family support, language, and cultural barriers.
Sydney MCS recruits, trains and supports volunteers to visit with an eligible resident either in an aged care facility or at home. The volunteer Community Visitor is matched with a Community Resident according to language and cultural backgrounds and possibly other interests.
Visits take place at least once a fortnight for an hour or two. Activities may include conversation, games, watching TV, listening to music, reading, reminiscing or other activities depending on the capacity of the resident.
A Community Visitor with SMCS will gain an understanding of the social and emotional needs of the elderly with the aim of enhancing the quality of life and well-being. People volunteer for many reasons. Some use volunteering as a way to gain new skills and experiences. A Community Visitor with SMCS will gain an understanding of non-profit organisations, servicing vulnerable and marginal groups, health and safety assessments and diversional therapy approaches. They may also have opportunities for further training. Community visitors are valued members of the SMCS team.
Volunteering with SMCS also provides an opportunity to meet new people, make personal or professional contacts, use and improve your language skills. Making a positive contribution to your community provides a sense of purpose and connection.
Meeting your match
We will accompany you on your first visit to meet the Resident for the first time. You may then decide whether you would like to continue to visit with this resident at least once a fortnight.
When you are ready to commence visits, you will need to sign an Acceptance of Duties which outlines your role and a Deed of Confidentiality.
Training, Support and Resources
Training will be provided on issues related to aging, cultural and linguistic diversity as well as staying safe and healthy, ideas for visits, providing feedback, and other helpful resources. The CVS coordinator is available to help with any concerns and will contact you regularly to ensure you are happy with your current arrangement.
As a volunteer, you are eligible for a range of community service courses offered by Learning and Development Training Organisations.