Local Govt | National News Video | Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Search


Social research gives insight into Rena volunteer experience

Social research gives insight into Rena volunteer experience

2 March 2012

Understanding the experiences of volunteers who helped clean up oil following the grounding of Cargo Ship Rena in October 2011 is the subject of a current research project being conducted in collaboration with University of Waikato, Bay of Plenty Polytechnic and Bay of Plenty Regional Council.

Bay of Plenty Regional Council Senior Land Management Officer Pim de Monchy, who was seconded to Maritime NZ as Volunteer Coordinator, said that the aim of the research was to provide insight into the volunteer experience and to assist with future volunteer planning and volunteer response efforts.

“Our Operation Beach Clean volunteers were a really unique bunch, we had a phenomenal response from volunteers and they made an amazing contribution toward the clean-up efforts. We want to document this as much as we can and learn from our volunteers’ experience,” Mr de Monchy said.

Registered Operation Beach Clean volunteers were invited to participate in an online survey about their volunteering experience. The 164 responses to this survey have provided the first insight into the experience of volunteers.

University of Waikato researchers from the School of Psychology and the Social Work Programme said the survey captured the demographics of volunteers and collected a snapshot of what motivated people to volunteer and how they found the experience.

“The most commonly reported reasons for volunteering were that people lived locally and used the beach for recreational purposes; more than eighty per cent of respondents felt they had made an effective contribution to the clean-up effort and would recommend volunteering for Operation Beach Clean to others,” said Dr Rebecca Sargisson.

“Survey results suggest work commitments and the distance from home were the two most significant barriers for volunteers participating in Operation Beach Clean. This information can help organisations better plan volunteering events and invitations to optimise participation,” she said.

Bay of Plenty Polytechnic research manager Dr Heather Hamerton said that survey results also indicated that although many respondents felt angry and shocked about oil washing up on the coast, most reported that their experience of volunteering was positive and satisfying.

“Being able to give back to their community through contributing to the clean-up seems to have helped many people to deal with their anger about the oil spill.”

Detailed interviews and focus group sessions with volunteers are now underway to gain more comprehensive information.

“While the initial survey of 164 people has been very helpful, we must remember this is just a small portion of the 7950 people who registered to volunteer for Operation Beach Clean. Once the additional qualitative research is completed we hope we will have a deeper understanding of the Rena volunteer experience,” Dr Hamerton said.

The research team includes Sonya Hunt, Kelly Smith and Trish Hanlen from the University’s Social Work Programme as well as Dr Sargisson and Dr Hamerton.

The report will be made available at www.boprc.govt.nz.


© Scoop Media

Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Gordon Campbell: On The Erebus Memorial In Parnell

Social media can be a wonderful tool for bringing people together in a common cause. It can also be a seedbed and spreader of mis-information on a community-wide scale. To which category do the protests against the siting of an Erebus memorial (to the 257 New Zealanders who died in that tragedy) in a secluded corner of a Parnell park happen to belong? IMO, it is clearly the latter, and the reasons for thinking so are explained below... More>>


Agriculture: Government To Phase Out Live Exports By Sea

The Government has announced that the export of livestock by sea will cease following a transition period of up to two years, said Agriculture Minister Damien O’Connor. “At the heart of our decision is upholding New Zealand’s reputation for high ... More>>


Norman Gemmell: New Zealand’s New Housing Policy Is Really Just A New Tax Package — And It’s A Shambles

Norman Gemmell , Te Herenga Waka — Victoria University of Wellington Economists like to talk about “optimal policy instruments” — essentially, policies that achieve their objectives more effectively or efficiently than the alternatives, and ... More>>

Climate Change: Emissions Report Shows Urgent Action Needed

Every part of Government will need to take urgent action to bring down emissions, the Minister for Climate Change, James Shaw said today in response to the recent rise in New Zealand’s greenhouse emissions. The latest annual inventory of New ... More>>


Claire Breen: ACC’s Policy Of Not Covering Birth Injuries Is One More Sign The System Is Overdue For Reform

Claire Breen , University of Waikato Recent media coverage of women not being able to get treatment for birth injuries highlights yet another example of gender bias in healthcare in New Zealand. More>>

Police: Police Accept Findings Of IPCA Report Into Photographs Taken At Checkpoint

Police accept the findings of a report by the Independent Police Conduct Authority (IPCA) relating to photographs taken at a checkpoint in Northland. On November 16, 2019, Police set up a checkpoint down the road from a fight night event in Ruakaka ... More>>


Health: Drug-Testing Law To Be Made Permanent

Interim legislation that is already proving to keep people safer from drugs will be made permanent, Health Minister Andrew Little says. More>>




InfoPages News Channels