Volunteer Award Citations 2013

Volunteer Recognition Awards 2013.

St Marks Presbyterian Church, Withells Road, Avonhead, Christchurch.

5th December 2011.

Ann Taylor of Birthright Christchurch. Ann Taylor developed a vision and a plan for the re-birth of Birthright.   She secured funds to lead a “makeover” of the organisation and recruited a new board. Ann then took on the challenging exercise of restructuring of staff. The result is an operational environment that supports Birthright to grow and deliver a wide range of services and programmes.   It also provided the platform that enabled the organisation to resume services within a week of the 2010 and 2011 earthquakes.   Birthright is now well placed to respond to the myriad of social needs which are consequences of these events.

Anna Harper of The Neighbourhood Trust. In March 2011 Anna Harper (living in Blenheim) wanted to do something to help the people of Christchurch. The Neighbourhood Trust was door knocking in the St Albans area to connect and help residents, and Anna became involved.   After a few months of going back and forth to Blenheim, Anna made the decision to relocate south. Anna continues voluntarily knocking on doors in the local area and provides wonderful follow up to people she met during those early days. Anna is also a valued member of other ecumenical groups and networks. She is constantly going the extra mile. 

Annette van der Pennen of IHC. Annette van der Pennen joined the IHC One to One Volunteer Friendship Programme in 2005.   Many people with intellectual disabilities say that the one thing they most want is a friend, someone who is neither paid to be in their life nor a family member. This programme matches a volunteer with a person with an intellectual disability who has similar interests. and together they enjoy each other’s company as friends do. Annette and her friend meet weekly, enjoy walking and swimming, having coffee, shopping, visiting the library, and parks and events in their community that interest them both. 

Barbara Summerfield of Alzheimer’s Canterbury – Ashburton. Barbara Summerfield began volunteering for Alzheimer’s Ashburton more than twenty years ago.   For the past four years she has been involved as the treasurer of the executive/fundraising committee submitting funding applications for the Ashburton office.   She has also organised the Ashburton appeal for the past two years and been involved with catering for client dinners. Barbara has worked hard for many years in the Ashburton Community, also being involved with the Ostomy Society and the Catholic Women’s league.   Barbara goes about her volunteering in a cheerful, helpful manner. 

Christopher King of Friends of Packe Street Park and Community Garden. Christopher King was nominated for his outstanding contribution to the maintenance of the Packe Street Park and Community Garden. Since the earthquake in 2010 Chris has spent long hours at the Park, hand watering during water restrictions and ensuring the survival of the garden’s plants. Chris came with his family to Christchurch from India when he was a boy and his experience as a migrant, and his understanding of different cultures, enables him to make new arrivals in the neighbourhood feel welcome. He is vice chairperson for the Friends of Packe Street Park Incorporated and is held in high regard. 

Gaye MacKenzie of the Cancer Society Supportive Care Programme. After the February 2011 earthquake, the Cancer Society of New Zealand was no longer able to offer the extensive services which it had done for over 15 years. Gaye MacKenzie, proprietor of Lingerie on Barrington, stepped in and very generously offered her time, the time of her qualified staff and her expertise and premises to continue the prosthesis fitting service. Gaye and the Cancer Society worked in partnership for more than 14 months. When the Cancer Society was able to re-start their service, the team of volunteers who had previously been involved, once again stepped up to the mark.

 

Gerard Manley of Pathway Charitable Group. Over the last ten years Gerard has volunteered his time to help people either in prison or transitioning back into the community. This role is vital in helping to reduce re-offending and improve community safety.   Gerard has been a Pathway volunteer mentor for over five years, is well liked by those who work with him, and valued by those he mentors. Gerard goes the extra mile to assist people in any way he can. Gerard is a volunteering star and deserves to be recognised for the hard work and emotional investment he has contributed to improving the lives of others.

 

Jan Slater of Bishopdale Community Trust. Jan Slater has been with the Bishopdale Community Trust since its beginning twelve years ago.   She was St Gregory’s Church representative on the original steering committee that helped set up the trust, and since then she has been Treasurer, a weekly bread pick up and delivery volunteer, and a Community Garden and Funday volunteer. She also prepares fundraising applications and organises street stalls. Jan is actively involved with her church affairs and helps out in numerous other ways in the community, including tutoring genealogy courses and organizing a genealogy group.

 

Lindsay MacGregor of Willowbank Wildlife Reserve. Lindsay MacGregor is a valued member of the Willowbank Wildlife Reserve team. Her role sees her looking after some of New Zealand’s most rare and endangered breeds of livestock. The time she gives, with her attention to detail and generous donation of tools and supplies for the livestock, are all indicators of Lindsay’s commitment and character. Lindsay joined Willowbank over eighteen months ago and is now an integral and appreciated member of staff. Lindsay’s abounding enthusiasm led her to increase her one day per week volunteering at the Reserve to three days per week!

 

Margaret Coghill of The St Luke’s Centre. The St Luke’s Centre offers five sessions each week for people who experience mental health issues. For over 20 years, Margaret Coghill has maintained caring relationships with many of the centre’s members. She is a special person who shares the produce of her large garden with many friends and has an enviable reputation for excellent scone making! As well as her day to day activities at the centre, Margaret makes a valuable input into the centre’s committee. At 90 years of age, Margaret continues to bring friendship and joy to many people who experience disadvantage and challenging health problems.

 

Marian Bayley of Alzheimers Canterbury – Christchurch. Marian Bayley has contributed her energy and skills to the work of Alzheimers Canterbury over the past two and a half years and currently volunteers as a companion to three different clients, spending three to four hours each week supporting them in the community.   She has also been involved with the monthly ‘Now’ café which provides a relaxed and comfortable environment for people with dementia and their carers, and attracts 40 to 50 clients. Her assistance after the earthquakes has been invaluable.   Marian comes from a nursing background and keeps herself up to date with the latest information about dementia.

 

Nikki Clarke of LifeLine. Nikki Clarke has been with LifeLine Christchurch for three years, working as a volunteer telephone counsellor. Six months into her role, she trained in the email counselling service and went on to provide email counselling support to the community from her home while LifeLine services were suspended at their headquarters after the February 22nd quake. Nikki willingly makes many LifeLine commitments: undertaking additional shifts, tutoring trainees, assisting with interviews and assessments, attending public information evenings, and processing database research, and helping with the annual street appeal. She is a highly valued and respected member of the LifeLine family.

 

Noor Jahan Howe (Jano) of Shakti Ethnic Women’s Support Group, Christchurch. Noor Jahan Howe (Jano) has been actively involved with Shakti since 2005. Her motivation and passion to work for women’s empowerment has been evident since then. In addition to being a member of the management committee, she has been actively involved in social awareness and socio-cultural programmes and events organised by Shakti, dedicating her life to social causes. She has also fostered a young girl for the last nine years. She has always put her heart into helping the ethnic community in New Zealand, being well aware of the difficulties which migrants and refugees can experience.

 

Patricia Blazey of Christchurch Garden City Trust. Patricia Blazey has been a volunteer for four annual Festivals of Flowers. During this last festival she exceeded herself. Her enthusiasm and friendliness was contagious and she spent days on the phone enlisting support and preparing schedules before the festival, as well as distributing posters and brochures. Patricia was also part of the hostess team ‘on the ground’. Her humility and generosity is awe-inspiring. She volunteers for other organisations such as the Christchurch Personal Guiding Service, bakes biscuits for Ronald McDonald House, and helps at numerous streets appeals, including Breast Cancer Society, St John’s Ambulance, Home and Family and Women’s Refuge.

 

Puji Campbell of Aspire Canterbury. Puji started volunteering with Aspire Canterbury in the spring of 2011 and since then has shown great commitment to the work of Aspire – supporting older people and people with disabilities. Her ‘can do’ attitude and inclusive manner enable her to relate extremely well to both staff and the wide range of people who use the services. Despite her initial reservations, because English is her second language, she has communicated effectively with people she has dealt with and has put together an ‘in house’ newsletter for the organisation. Puji uses her initiative and has made useful suggestions for improvement of Aspire’s services.

 

Russell (Rusty) Boyd of CanTeen – Canterbury/West Coast. CanTeen was very pleased when Russell (Rusty) Boyd, a young member, became a volunteer with CanTeen when he turned 25. Since then he has been an amazing volunteer, his ‘been there and done that’ knowledge allowing him to make genuine connections. Rusty is a favourite with CanTeen members. He’s always first to put his hand up when help is needed, fundraising or organising a Rest and Relaxation camp in his home town of Kaikoura last year. Rusty is someone that CanTeen can count on at any time. They certainly couldn’t do the things they do for their members without him.

 

Ruth Woodley of English Language Partners N.Z. Ruth Woodley trained as a volunteer home tutor in 2000 and has volunteered in various roles with English Language Partners since then. She has worked on a one-to-one basis with pre-literate refugees in their homes, and in classes. Currently she is working with a group of deaf refugee learners, so is also teaching herself New Zealand Sign Language! There is no funding for these deaf learners, so without Ruth’s commitment they would miss out on English and New Zealand Sign Language tuition. She also hires the Community minibus enabling her learners’ group to participate in activities organised by the Deaf Community.

 

Shirley Havenaar of Christchurch City Mission. Shirley Havenaar has been a volunteer at the Christchurch City Mission for the past six years. She works once a week in the mission’s Hereford Street shop, and spends six weeks before Christmas unwrapping and sorting the gifts which are donated by the members of the community and organisations around the city. She organises the boxes of gifts which are distributed at the Christmas dinner, and sorts gifts for mission social services clients, as well as extra boxes to share with other local helping organisations. Straight after Christmas, Shirley is back unwrapping and sorting later donations in preparation for the next year’s events.

 

Vince Flynn of the Christchurch City Council – Graffiti Programme. Although Vince Flynn has been registered as a volunteer with the Off the Wall programme only since February 2011, he has voluntarily removed graffiti around the city – from lamp posts, utility boxes and bus shelters for the past forty years. He used his own paint and resources and is still using his own vehicle to travel to remove graffiti. He has a passion and dedication to making his community a better place to live in and has truly contributed to supporting the City Council’s goal of ‘reducing the impact that graffiti vandalism has on the residents of Christchurch City’.

 

DALTA DAYS team of the Salvation Army and the award will be accepted by John Samuels and Jeremy Livinson. DALTA stands for Deliberate Acts of Love to All and the DALTA DAYS volunteers provide a cheery smile and willing hands as they support the community by doing one-off jobs such as gardening, section clearing, landscaping, painting, and property maintenance repairs for those overwhelmed or unable to carry out such work themselves. The DALTA DAYS team have also helped many overcome earthquake-related difficulties. Recently the DALTA DAYS team has created a shipping container family store at Linwood Salvation Army, adding value to the community while gaining building skills, building relationships, and increasing confidence.

 

Volunteers of the Cancer Society Volunteer Driving Service. The Award will be accepted by Barry Shields and Margaret Murchison. The Volunteer Drivers of the Cancer Society Canterbury-West Coast Division provide a ‘flag ship’ service. Every time a volunteer driver drives a person who has a cancer diagnosis to treatment or an appointment, they help to reduce the impact of cancer in our community. The volunteer drivers have kept this service operational through earthquakes, floods and unexpected snow dumps.   Cancer doesn’t stop for natural or unnatural disasters. Some of the drivers accessed four wheel drive vehicles and picked up not only patients but radiology technicians as well. Wendy Barker and Gilliam Shirley co-ordinate a stunning and dedicated volunteer team.

 

The Monthly Social Drivers of Arthritis New Zealand. The Award will be accepted by Lyndsay Voice and Janet Allen. For many years Arthritis New Zealand has run a monthly social which is a place where people can meet and enjoy entertainment, afternoon tea, and friendship. Most of the participants are elderly and many cannot or do not drive. Without the volunteer drivers these people would simply not be able to attend. The team of twelve drivers, ably managed by coordinators Lyndsay Voice and Janet Allen, commit to picking up and dropping off members from most areas of Christchurch each month. Many have done this for a number of years and their continued assistance and support is much appreciated.

 

Lincoln and Districts Community Care Volunteer group members. The Award will be accepted by Janice Burnett and Jenni Heffer. The bulk of Lincoln Districts Community Care services are delivered by a group of fifty plus dedicated and loyal volunteers who selflessly give of their time, skills and resources. The organisation values the commitment of these kind folk from all walks of life who believe in caring for their community. They are vital to the success of the services. All are modest about the work they do yet the recipients and the community are richer because of their efforts. A number of them have been involved since the organisation’s inception, over thirty years ago, and they well deserve recognition.

 

Te Koru Youth. The Award will be accepted by Samantha Cade and Gavin McGill. Te Koru Youth, aged between fourteen and eighteen years of age, are a credit to their local community. They make the Papanui Youth Development Trust the place that it is, regularly giving up their Friday night to lead sessions, and run games and activities for intermediate aged people. They also assist with preparations for holiday programmes and community based initiatives. In partnership with the Christchurch City Council, they have run their own events for their peers: ‘The Big Splash and the ‘Whakaoho Community Event’. This group of young people enables the trust to run many of the projects it is currently involved with.

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