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Gill Greer to head Volunteer Service Abroad

Gill Greer to head VSA

The VSA (Volunteer Service Abroad) Council is delighted to announce that it has appointed Gill Greer as VSA’s new chief executive officer.

Dr Greer will take up her new role on July 9, succeeding the current CEO Debbie Snelson.

Dr Greer, a Wellingtonian, was director general of the International Planned Parenthood Federation (IPPF) in London from 2006 to 2011. IPPF is a volunteer-led organisation that works with 153 community-owned partners, including nine in the Pacific.

She was previously executive director of the New Zealand Family Planning Association.
Prior to that she was involved in education, including a term as Assistant Vice Chancellor at Victoria University.

Dr Greer was made a Member of the New Zealand Order of Merit for services to family planning and literature in 2005. She was awarded a CBE in this year’s British New Year’s honours list for her work on international health and women’s rights.

In 2010 she was included on global advocacy organisation Women Deliver’s list of the 100 most inspiring people who have delivered for girls and women. Others on the list include Oprah Winfrey, Hillary Clinton and UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon.

Dr Greer returned to New Zealand late last year, and has just completed two major reports on the Asia Pacific region.

Dr Greer says she feels privileged to be joining the staff and volunteers at VSA, which is currently celebrating its 50th anniversary.

“VSA is as relevant today as it was when it was first set up in 1962. Just as they did 50 years ago, VSA volunteers work with partner organisations across the Pacific, making a difference to people’s lives every day.”

VSA Council chair Farib Sos says that Dr Greer is extremely well qualified to head VSA.

“Through her work with the IPPF she is very aware of the issues facing developing countries, including the countries in the wider Pacific where VSA’s volunteers are based,” he says. “We believe that Dr Greer’s experience will be invaluable in helping to guide VSA’s work as we enter our second half century.”

About VSA
VSA is New Zealand’s largest and most experienced international volunteering agency that sends Kiwi volunteers on long and short-term assignments to share their skills with our neighbours in the wider Pacific.

We are currently focusing our efforts in Melanesia, Polynesia and Timor-Leste.

Over the past 50 years we have recruited more than 3,500 ordinary New Zealanders to achieve exceptional work with our partner organisations.

We work with our partner organisations to make sure that all our assignments are locally identified, locally relevant, and locally delivered.

VSA is a registered charity and is non-governmental, non-religious and non-political.

For more information visit


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