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Everyone has the skills to volunteer

Media Release
For Immediate Release
Friday, 4 December 2009

Everyone has the skills to volunteer

Everyone has a skill that would be useful to someone else if they volunteered their time.

That’s the message that ComVoices, an independent network of Tangata Whenua and Community and Voluntary organisations, want to spread on Saturday 5 December - International Volunteer Day.

Robin Gunston, National Director of Prison Fellowship says volunteers have a crucial role in New Zealand’s prisons.

“Every week 1100 volunteers visit all 21 prisons to take church services. For some men these volunteers are the only visitors they ever get.

“Our volunteers give up a whole day to work with prisoners through taking church services or teaching musical instruments and art, or teaching other skills that ensure the men get every opportunity to reform their ways and live a useful life once released,” Robin says.

For the New Zealand Council of Social Services (NZCOSS), it was administration help that made their year.

“Using a volunteer to stuff envelopes and send out resources meant we could deliver information to the community while also continuing our busy day-to-day schedule serving New Zealanders,” says Jill Turquet, Communications Officer.

“There is no way we could have handled the overwhelming volume of the mail-out without the help of a wonderful volunteer.”

Every year more than one million New Zealanders volunteer, contributing more to non-profit organisations per capita than any other country in the world – two thirds of the time put into non-profit organisations is by volunteers.

Tim Burns, Executive Director of Volunteering New Zealand says, “there is always a need for more volunteers; we need an army of people across New Zealand with a range of skills and the time to help out.

“Volunteering is a great way to meet people, make friends, gain practical work experience and contribute to your community,” he says.

As well as advocating for volunteering at a national level, Volunteering New Zealand has had volunteers build their website, compile their annual report and work on their brochure.

Find your own volunteering opportunity at: http://volunteernow.org.nz/jobs/

ENDS

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