Each year New Zealand celebrates National Volunteer Week to recognise and celebrate the vital contribution of New Zealand’s approximately 1.2 million volunteers, in areas as diverse as social development, the economy and the environment.
‘Live, laugh, share – volunteer’ is the theme this year, which helps capture the heart-felt appreciation we feel when people come together to build stronger, more vibrant communities through volunteer service.
Interactionz celebrated National Volunteer week with an afternoon tea with our own awesome volunteers to say thank you very much for all they do. Interactionz philosophy of engaging natural and community supports to be alongside people is vital for us to achieve our vision of ‘people leading lives in communities where all can thrive’.
It was incredibly fitting when one of our volunteers accepted her gift, and she commented that she got just as much out of her volunteering role as she hoped the person she volunteers with gets.
Big thanks to all our volunteers.
Until next time…
Lynda and Lisa were recently interviewed by Holly on Connect with Community Waikato (Free FM). Listen to the interview which outlines the work that Interactionz are doing in the community and our evolution into a social enterprise.
Inclusive New Zealand hosted a regional forum in Hamilton on 28 June. As part of Interactionz professional development programme for staff, services were closed for the day so that all paid staff could attend. The content of the forum was topical including an overview of what is happening in the sector regarding collaboration, outcomes and service design in the current contracting environment. There were conversations about service delivery and practice and what skills and knowledge staff will need to be able to respond to the Enabling Good Lives principles. Participants were introduced to a “pricing model” that will enable organisations to discover how to cost their services in the changing environment of fee for service – a shift away from bulk government funding.
In the afternoon participants were entertained by Mike Scadden, who talked about facilitation and mentoring as becoming increasingly important skills when leading teams and working in the community sector. He also offered up some insights into how to cope in the change environment and how we can deal with change and offered some problem solving techniques.
On 21 June, we acknowledged the wonderful contribution of our volunteers to the organisation and to the lives of the people we serve with our annual volunteer recognition afternoon tea. This gave us an opportunity to formally thank our volunteers for their contribution and to celebrate National Volunteering Week.
Volunteers are vital to the work of Interactionz and we simply couldn’t do the work we do without them. Interactionz volunteers contributed 2,600 hours in 2016 (July 2015-June 2016), an average of 236 hours per month. In monetary terms, this equates to $44,200. Interactionz volunteers are giving people – in fact, of those who have a driver’s licence, 59% are listed as donors. This is significantly higher than the national average of 48%.
New Zealand is the second most charitable nation in the world (Charities Aid Foundation) and volunteers contribute 270 million hours to the community every year. This equates to around $459 million. Volunteers provide approximately 67% of the not-for-profit workforce, contributing about 2.3% of New Zealand’s GDP. Each week, 400,000 New Zealanders are giving in some way.
A sincere thank you to our volunteers for accompanying the people we serve on their journeys towards good lives – lives that involves doing everyday things in everyday places with everyday people at everyday times.