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Supporter Spotlight - Imogen Hoffenberg


Published on January 8, 2021

Meet Imogen! One of our dedicated SEED Volunteers who after volunteering with us since July, has recently moved back to Melbourne to pursue a career in women's advocacy. As one of our most regular weekly volunteers, Imo worked with the kids at our refuge during supported playgroups and holiday programs. Thank you so much for your ongoing support and dedication Imogen, you will be missed by the kids and mothers at WAGEC!

Introduce yourself! Who are you and what inspired you to volunteer with WAGEC?

I’m Imogen! I’m a university student studying International studies at the Royal Melbourne Institute of Technology. Last year I was fortunate enough to work for a company that engaged large organisations that had a gender disparity in their leadership teams and assist in changing that for a more balanced workplace and ultimately the greater good! This work really inspired me and sparked my interest to pursue a career in women’s advocacy. When I moved back to Sydney in June, I really wanted to get involved with a local female focused and run organisation. That’s when I found WAGEC. It was perfect timing as they were just starting a new intake of volunteers, so I signed up.

Do you have any highlights of volunteering with WAGEC? If so, what are they?

I am fortunate enough to help in the SEED program at WAGEC which focuses on the children of the women in the refuges. I love working with these kids because despite where they have come from or what they have experienced they always bring joy to the time we spend together, whether it be homework, hide and seek or musical chairs. It never gets tiring watching the 5-year-old kids that make up homework club absolutely bust a move! The women that work at WAGEC are always so thankful which makes the time spent helping that much more enjoyable.

What is the typical day in the life of a volunteer?

A typical day at WAGEC consists of sitting down with one or two kids and burning through some sight words, spelling or maths before launching into a game of hide and seek (of which there are only 3 hiding places, but it somehow never gets old). Then, we always like to finish homework club with few rounds of musical chairs, freeze or what’s the time mister wolf. Its warming to think that these kids are still playing the same games that I was about 20 years ago!

What does community mean to you?

Having originally come from a small town in rural Queensland, a sense of community has always meant a lot to me. Being able to feel supported at the same time as giving support is what I believe to be the real crux of an effective community is. It is plane to say that the WAGEC community is that and more.

What is something you are grateful for or something not many people know about you (e.g. fun fact)?

I’m grateful to live in a country with so many days of sun because it’s easy to forget how happy sun on your skin makes you feel.