The LifeLine International Outstanding Volunteer of the Year is Suzane Wong from Lifeline Malaysia.
Recognised for more than 25 years of volunteering, Suzane said her time with Lifeline Malaysia had taught her so much about herself and given her access to a wide support network of passionate people.
“This award is not for me, it’s for Lifeline Malaysia,” Suzane said.
“I am proud to see Lifeline Malaysia being recognised internationally for the work we do.”
Signing up to help Lifeline Malaysia in 1997, Suzane was appointed as a volunteer counsellor in 2000 and has seen the organisation grow and mature. Like many counsellors, she joined to help address a lack of mental health support in Malaysia and to help young people struggling with a range of issues.
“Since I joined a lot has changed,” Suzane said.
“When I started, the team was small and we all did different kinds of work, not just answering the phones but administration, public relations, training, and rosters.
“Now Lifeline Malaysia is better known we’re working on expanding our hours.”
“Eventually we hope to be able to answer calls 24 hours a day, but we need to be able to continue the high quality service for callers and look after our volunteers.”
Now managing training of new volunteers, Suzane says that the best parts of being a volunteer are the friendships, support and sense of community she enjoys with her team.
“Volunteers are the backbone of Lifeline, we can’t survive without them,” she said.
“No matter where you are, as a volunteer you are playing an important part in Lifeline’s success.”
To access a Lifeline counsellor in Malaysia call 016-613 1495.