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Volunteer awareness week

Media Release

Age Concern New Zealand

June 19, 2012

Volunteer awareness week 17- 23 June

More than 40,000 older New Zealanders are severely and chronically lonely.

Age Concerns estimate loneliness to be a health risk as smoking, which is why they are working to make a difference to some of New Zealand’s most vulnerable older people by providing them with a regular visitor.

This Accredited Visiting Program is a prime example of the difference volunteers can make. Today, as part of Volunteer Awareness Week Age Concern New Zealand’s Chief Executive, Ann Martin, would like to say a huge thank you to these visitors and all other Age Concern volunteers for the difference they make in so many people’s lives.

Nearly half of Age Concerns Accredited Visitors are over 65 and some are over 85. Collectively they make more than 70,000 visits each year.

“It would be impossible for Age Concerns to function without our wonderful volunteers. They do a marvelous job helping us in our task of serving the needs of older people.”

Martin says older people are some of New Zealand’s most active volunteers.

“Older people are absolutely essential to the functioning of many community organizations. At least one third of people over 65 are involved in voluntary work.”

According to Martin, volunteering can also be a great way to get your foot in the door to paid employment.

“Our volunteers get experience working in or for a non-profit organisation, up-skilled and a reference, making it a win-win situation.”

Help is always needed. Behind the scenes or in the forefront, volunteers with Age Concern make a difference in the lives of others.

For more information about Age Concern, or to volunteer for your local Age Concern, visit www.ageconcern.org.nz


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