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Creating volunteer opportunities for people with all abilities

Posted: 15-May-2014 by All Abilities

Volunteer opportunities at maccabi victoria for people with disabilities 

Maccabi Victoria recognises the importance of demonstrating a holistic approach to inclusion for people with disabilities. The All Abilities Inclusion Coordinator (Lauren Mandel) reports "We must look at giving this cohort the opportunity to be included in the Maccabi community in every way possible; in active and non active playing roles both on and off the field". 

The Inclusion Coordinator states “People with disabilities are often at the recipient end of support and care services but very rarely have the chance to volunteer, take on leadership roles and develop their skills in this area. We look forward to developing innovative programs to overcome this barrier”.

In order to achieve these missions, we have already provided 27-year-old All Abilities member, Josh Ferenbach, with the chance to visit our Caulfield offices and assist with light administration tasks. Josh has worked tirelessly for hours following our recent annual appeal. He also volunteered his time for Maccabi Victoria at the Glen Eira City Council's Disability Respite and Recreation expo earlier this month. 

Josh will be attending the Maccabi Victoria Volunteer Thank you Cocktail Reception this Sunday (18.05.14) to thank him for his hard work and dedication. We hope to give Josh and his peers more opportunities to work with the organisation throughout 2014. 

The Inclusion Coordinator and Morris Ritz, the president of the North Caulfield Football Club are developing a pilot program that will enable people with disabilities to volunteer as a games assistant at their home matches . This position will be advertised within the next month.

The Melbourne Junior Carnival to be held in January 2015 is looking to restructure its functioning to become more inclusive of people with disabilities. Senior All Abilities members (18 years and older) will be given the opportunity to volunteer during the carnival and take on a leadership role. 


Interview with Josh Ferenbach, All Abilities Member (29.04.14)

What is your name? 

How old are you? 

What is your favourite sport?
I have three favourite sports: basketball, AFL and volleyball

Why do you like to play sport?
It helps to keep me fit, gives me the chance to do exercise and I get to meet lots of new people

What Maccabi Victoria All Abilities programs are you involved in?
I am part of the basketball program, holiday programs and Sunday sessions (such as ten pin bowling and lawn bowls).  I have also recently started working in the Maccabi Victoria office as a volunteer administrative assistant.

What has been your favourite Maccabi Victoria All Abilities program and why?
The Fun ‘Sports Tour in the City’ holiday program at the MCG and Museum was my favourite. It was great to see the big MCG field; it looks so much smaller on TV! I loved going to the players change rooms and showing my friends what the players do in there, like pretending to be their coach.

You recently started working as a volunteer administrative assistant in the Maccabi Victoria offices. Can you please tell me more about this experience?
I started working two weeks ago in the Maccabi Victoria offices. It gives me something to do on the days I am not working at other jobs. It means that I am busy and not sitting at home and watching TV all day.

Who is your favourite sports star?
Chris Judd from Carlton of-course! And Shaquille O'Neal from the Miami Heats. I have his top at home. I also like Michael Jordan from Chicago Blues. I think he’s retired now, but I’m not sure.

What sports or activities would you like to play in the future with Maccabi Victoria All abilities?
Bowling, lawn bowling and go to a football game.

(Josh exclaimed “WOW that’ll be really good” when informed that he would have the chance to do all three of these things during the year!)

What makes a good leader in sport?
You have to be good with people, supportive of your teammates, nice to your teammates and don’t yell at them! If you do yell at your teammates they won’t be happy with you.

What is your dream or long-term goal with Maccabi Victoria All Abilities? 
One day I want to be the coach of a basketball team, like our head coach. Remember how good I was at coaching the team at the MCG?

Why did you start with the Maccabi Victoria All Abilities programs?
Well, I knew about Maccabi because my girlfriend told me about it. I used to play basketball at school and I wanted to improve my basketball skills and that’s why I joined.

What do you like about Maccabi Victoria All Abilities programs?
Meeting new people, going out, doing new programs and playing basketball.

For more information about volunteer opportunities with Maccabi Victoria, please contact:
Lauren Mandel (All Abilities Inclusion Coordinator)
P: 03 9563 5885 | M: 0412 605 480 | E:
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