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20th anniversary of community volunteering

Hon Luamanuvao Winnie Laban

Minister for the Community and Voluntary Sector

22 May 2006 Media Statement

Laban celebrates 20th anniversary of community volunteering

Community volunteering is in the spotlight this week as celebrations are held throughout New Zealand to mark the 20th anniversary of the Community Organisation Grants Scheme (COGS).

Minister for the Community and Voluntary Sector, Luamanuvao Winnie Laban, will attend events in Auckland and Wellington today to mark the 20th anniversary of COGS.

“Countless hours of volunteer contribution from the community, together with investment by the Labour-led government, have supported COGS to build the cornerstone of strong sustainable communities in New Zealand,” Luamanuvao Winnie Laban said.

"Social capital is built up within civil society – within our communities – and social capital is the glue that binds our communities together.”

Luamanuvao Winnie Laban will attend a regional celebration for the three COGS Local Distribution Committees (LDCs) in the Auckland area. The Auckland event marks the beginning of regional events that will be held throughout the country.

The Minister will later attend a national celebration in Wellington and launch a commemorative book, which celebrates 20 years of COGS and community success stories.

“It is a tribute to New Zealanders’ community spirit that this country has 1 million volunteers. I am proud to be involved in COGS and to be launching these vibrant events, which showcase communities and government working together to support community needs and to celebrate community wellbeing for all.”

COGS is administered by the Department of Internal Affairs and provides essential support to non-profit, voluntary, and community organisations. Since its inception in 1986, more than 50,000 grants totalling almost $200 million have been distributed throughout New Zealand.


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