I am currently in NZ after having travelled from Christchurch to Dunedin and return, trying to dream up any good reason to move here on a permanent basis. This truly is God’s own country. The scenery is magnificent, the farms are so neat and prosperous looking, and the people are incredibly friendly. While in Dunedin we visited Lanarch Castle, set in 14 hectares of beautifully maintained traditional gardens situated high above Otago harbour. Taking in exquisite and dramatic views from every angle; it would be hard to imagine a more idyllic location.
William Lanarch, who had built and established his dream here, took his life because his money had caused him so much family grief and within a few years the property was deserted and over-grown. Just as it was stumbled upon by a dreamer in 1867 it was rediscovered again in 1967 by another dreamer who restored it to what it is today. However, this time it has been restored and opened for the public to enjoy. For a brief moment my girlhood memories of my favourite book, I Captured a Castle by Dodie Smith were brought to life.
It has been said many times that money and talent do not buy us happiness but they can provide us with great satisfaction if we are prepared to share them with others.
MOPS, to my knowledge, has made no-one financially rich, but we have all been enriched through our involvement in both giving and receiving.
With only one or two MOPS meetings to go between now and the Christmas break, it’s time to say a big thankyou to all our committed volunteers for another year of faithful service.
When you are asked if you work, your response is probably “no” but the truth is that volunteers make an immense contribution to our society, contributing tens of billions of dollars to the Australian economy each year, and sustaining hundreds of thousands of not for profit organisations large and small.
MOPS employs the services of approx 740 part-time volunteers in Australia in areas of support or leadership at the different levels of the organisation, of which the value is incalculable.
So, why do we do what we do?
Apart from the eternal value, we do it to have some positive outcome for our community, helping mums fulfill their dream of being the best mother they can be.
Some of us are motivated by pure altruism, but that is unsustainable in the long term unless there are rewards also for the giver. When these benefits are not monetary we seek our rewards in appreciation, and in the personal growth and development that the work and training affords us.
We know we have succeeded in our role when we hand over the reins and the group continues to thrive. Planning ahead is crucial in building a sustainable future for MOPS. I am delighted to say that our volunteer force continues to grow numerically. Regional Training Days are already being planned for next year for your further training and equipping, so please avail yourselves of these opportunities.