The current business model for emergency management volunteering in Australia and New Zealand is unsustainable and needs to be changed.
Australia’s capacity to respond to natural disasters depends largely on specialised volunteer-based organisations with small paid workforces and much larger unpaid, volunteer workforces. However, a range of societal and demographic trends, such as shifting work-life patterns and suburbanisation, are challenging the capacity of these organisations to retain their volunteers at a time when vulnerability to natural disasters is increasing.
The objective of this cluster is to develop new models, strategies and approaches for volunteering that support emergency management and that:
- Improve the long-term sustainability of the volunteer workforce, and;
- Better engage the potential of volunteering to build disaster resilience in Australian communities.