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Student Volunteers Rally Around Wellington

Student Volunteers Rally Around Wellington

The Student Volunteer Army (SVA) network is growing. Following the recent earthquakes that rocked Wellington and the upper South Island, the Volunteer Army Foundation have offered full support to the development of the "Wellington Student Volunteer Army". The group, co-led by Matt Harrington and three others, is calling for students of any university or high school who wish to have an active involvement in helping communities.

The Volunteer Army Foundation (VAF) was established by the six founders of the original UC SVA, and serves to continue the legacy created by 11,000+ students who supported the city as spontaneous volunteers following the devastating Christchurch earthquakes.

Volunteer Army Foundation General Manager Jason Pemberton said this afternoon he is delighted to see Wellington students taking such initiative. "Matt and the team in Wellington have got a really clear picture of how much good young people can bring to their community, so it’s great being able to collaborate with them to help proactively deliver their vision”.

SVA Founder and 2012 Young New Zealander of the Year Sam Johnson comments from his experience that shared responsibility and the involvement of young people in disaster preparedness, response and recovery is vital. "NZ no longer sees students and young people as a nuisance, but as the untapped resource they are - prepared to roll up their sleeves and make a difference. The trick is to make it simple for people to be a good citizen!”

The Wellington Student Volunteer Army is available to help with clean-up work or general labour resulting from the recent earthquakes, and is looking at ways of being better prepared to help the Wellington Community moving forward. They can be found at www.facebook.com/svawgtn, twitter.com/WellingtonSVA or by emailing wellington@sva.org.nz.

VAF takes a proactive approach to adopting best practices in youth engagement, disaster preparedness and community service and intertwining them into new and existing programmes. One of these programmes is the Student Volunteer Army Clubs Network, a network of young people making incredible contributions using the everyday tools in their pockets. See volunteerarmy.org for more details.

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