Diamond Creek Op Shop turns 50

Words and Photos by Copperline

L-R Beverley Briese OAM, President of the Friends of Austin Health, Yvonne Dunt, Adam Horsburgh, Julene Robbins

Celebrating Austin Health’s Allies at Diamond Creek Op Shop

The Diamond Creek Op Shop has just celebrated its 50th anniversary. As a cornerstone of the Diamond Creek Auxiliary under Friends of Austin Health; Austin Health CEO, Adam Horsburgh said “This remarkable milestone not only underscores the Op Shop’s enduring commitment but also celebrates the extraordinary volunteers who have been the backbone of this initiative.”

Since 1973 more than four million dollars has been raised for Austin Health. Raising $86 in 1974 with a group of seven volunteers to an astonishing $247,355 in the last financial year with a team of 50 volunteers.

Manager of Volunteer Engagement at Austin Health, Jodi Batchelor, expressed her gratitude, saying, “It is incredible that an Op Shop where most items sell for $2 or $3 can bring in that amount of money. It illustrates the incredibly hard work of every single volunteer who helps support the shop.”

Yvonne Dunt continues to volunteer at the Op Shop since its inception 50 years ago, followed closely by Claire Weaver who has been volunteering there for 49 years. Claire was unable to attend the celebration but Copperline was told by ‘an insider’ that Claire catches two buses to the Op Shop and two buses home each week; such is her dedication to her role.

Asked about her tremendous volunteering effort, Yvonne said she wanted to be a nurse when she was younger but in those days parents guided their children’s career direction so she became a shorthand typist. Yvonne said the Auxiliary touched her heart and “I couldn’t be a nurse, but I can do this.” She said volunteering is a good way of meeting people and getting to know the community.

At the celebration event, President of the Diamond Creek Auxiliary, Julene Robbins, acknowledged and thanked all the volunteers for their valuable contribution. She also expressed appreciation to Adam Horsburgh for getting to know the volunteers and really understanding the work that they do.

The funds raised have been instrumental in supporting Austin Health to purchase essential medical equipment, including the Kidney Machine Perfusion, a surgical microscope, and three anaesthetic machines.

The Op Shop needs more volunteers, particularly on Saturdays. If you’re interested to know more you can email [email protected] or call 9496 9602.