ParKanDo a finalist in volunteer awards

Parkando members, Peter and Carmel Wall, Mimi Morgan and Pam West. (Damjan Janevski) 386933_01

ParKanDo, a grassroots support group for people impacted by Parkinson’s have been named as a finalist in the state governments 2023 Volunteering Awards.

The Hobsons Bay group is volunteer run by three members who have Parkinson’s as well as one carer.

Co-leader Pam West said the group are thrilled to have been named a finalist in the grassroots category.

“We are very excited and very pleased to bring recognition to our group,” she said.

“This will hopefully raise the profile of Parkinson’s in the community, the fastest growing neurological condition in the world.”

The state government said this award celebrates small community-led organisations that have provided important local services, led positive change, or supported social and community life.

With funding from Hobsons Bay council ParKanDo spread awareness about Parkinson’s and offer activities for the community.

As previously reported by Star Weekly, preferred activities include weekly Dance for Parkinson’s, Painting with Parkinson’s, strength classes and a guest speaker program.

“We hope this will let people know that we are there to support them and hope that this will bring that awareness to the community,” said Ms West.

As their group continues to grow and change, so does its member count.

Sitting at more than 100 members, Ms West said the group continues to get referrals from many sources.

“The big message we want to send out is that it can be very isolating and confronting, particularly when you’re newly diagnosed, but you’re not on your own.

“There’s a group out there that knows what it is like and welcomes all including family and loved ones who are impacted.”

One individual and one organisation will be named the Premier’s Volunteer Champions of the year on Tuesday, February 27.

Jennifer Pittorino