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Let’s celebrate our health volunteers

Hon Dr David Clark

Minister of Health


24 April 2019 PĀNUI PĀPĀHO

MEDIA STATEMENT


Health Minister David Clark is asking New Zealanders to think of how they’ve benefited from or seen the work of those who freely share their time, energy, and compassion to help improve the health and wellbeing of others.

Nominations open today for the 2019 Minister of Health Volunteer Awards.

“Great work goes on every day by tens of thousands of volunteers across our health services, including hospitals, hospices and non-governmental organisations, from volunteer first responders through to cancer supporters,” David Clark says.

“Volunteering benefits patients and anyone using health services, and supports New Zealand’s wellbeing as a whole. Whether it’s helping someone get to their medical appointment, fundraising for resources to help make the patient experience more comfortable, or providing friendship for people who need it, volunteering can make such a big difference.

“Volunteering also improves equity in our health system by helping personalise services and making them easier to access.

“These people deserve our gratitude each and every day, but over the coming weeks we have the chance to offer special recognition of their generosity.

“If you know an individual or team of volunteers who deserve to be recognised, I encourage you to nominate them.

“These awards are one way we can thank people who give up their time to make life better for others, while showcasing the many great initiatives that are making a real difference,” David Clark says.

For more information about nominations and the Awards, including past recipients, go to http://volunteerawards.health.govt.nz/

Nominations close on 29 May 2019. The Awards will be presented during National Volunteer Week, 16 – 22 June.


Background:

Last year 18 individuals and 8 teams, representing over 1000 volunteers in total, were recognised with a Minister of Health Volunteer Award.

Recipients included:

• a community service to transport people to their health appointments

• a marae-based breathing exercise programme

• a school lunch service that is making healthy food affordable and easy

• support for Pacific people that helps them understand how it is to have lived experience of a mental health and addiction disorder

• a programme that matches people with an intellectual disability with a volunteer friend in the community.

ends

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