September 26, 2020

Celebrating collective impact of volunteers

‘Te Hua o te Mahi Tahi’- ‘the benefit of working together’ theme will highlight the invaluable contribution of Aotearoa’s amazing 1.2 million volunteers during the National Volunteer Week that runs from June 21-27.

National Volunteer Week honours and recognises the collective energies and mana of all volunteers in Aotearoa, and demonstrates how our communities emerge stronger when working together.

Volunteers are vital to the success of most not-for-profit organisations  and 27,000 registered charities benefit from the work contributed by formal and informal volunteer labour.

“Volunteers don’t get paid, not because they’re worthless, but because they’re priceless,” as Sherry Anderson once said.

Their worth can be judged by the fact that approximately 21.5% of New Zealanders undertake volunteer work. Over 230,000 individuals volunteer give up their time every week to work tirelessly and without pay to make a difference in their communities. In the previous year, for example, they collectively work 159 million hours of formal volunteer labour each year with the value of this labour estimated at $4 billion.  


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The value of collaborative social action shines through at times when our communities are stretched and challenged.  During the recent Covid-19 lockdown, the power and potential of volunteering was especially appreciated. Volunteers rallied to keep communities connected, to help them get well, stay well, and to answer the call to unite and be kind.

The contribution of volunteers and charities has been recognised by Poto Williams, Minister for the Community and Voluntary Sector.

“I want to offer my thanks and appreciation to our amazing volunteers and charity workers for giving up their time to help others. This has been especially appreciated during the recent lockdown,” says the Minister.

While thanking the contribution of volunteers, the Minister Williams says “Your mahi glues us together as New Zealanders through good times and bad.”

You can find more information about National Volunteer Week here.


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