Annually, Volunteering Waikato - Te Ohu Tuuao O Waikato host the Volunteer Excellence Awards to celebrate volunteers who have made an outstanding contribution in our community. This year's awards will be held on Thursday 22 June, during National Volunteer Week - Te Wiki Tuuao aa-Motu - an opportunity to thank volunteers across Aotearoa New Zealand, for the difference they make and the impact they have on our communities.
The INDIVIDUAL category celebrates individual volunteers aged 26 years or over, and the nominees are:
Alison joined Kidz Korner Toy Library in 2009 on the Committee overseeing the running of the toy library. Alison's willingness to spend countless hours volunteering her time is a positive example to all around her of how to live in a community. Her positive attitude, willingness to help, and dedication to the toy library and its mission are truly inspiring.
Nominated by Kidz Korner Toy Library
Angie is Volunteer Visitor for Age Concern Waikato, visiting older people in our community. Here are a couple of comments from the people she visits: “Angie is a lady who shows true empathy and doesn't realise it.” “Angie has made a huge difference in our lives, going way beyond the scope of her role as a volunteer, she has truly become a good friend.”
Nominated by Age Concern Waikato
Dexter is a Data Officer volunteer at South Waikato Community Health Transport. He is skilled in the field of computers and is very patient with people who don't have these skills. He works tirelessly in the background for the smooth running of the organisation whilst also volunteering with Lions and Meals on Wheels.
Nominated by South Waikato Community Health Transport
Emma joined the Insight Endometriosis Board in 2017 as the Treasurer, bringing her accounting background and her financial acumen - which is useful for a charity. Through Emma's work on the Board, she has strengthened the organisation, enabling it to provide more services to more people who have increasingly complicated needs.
Nominated by Insight Endometriosis
Guriwinder volunteers at Aspire Community Support as a Volunteer Companion. She takes the time to get to know people individually, respect them and support them. Guriwinder is an active learner, motivated to learn more, and she is amazing.
Nominated by Aspire Community Support
Helen has been volunteering at the Refugee Orientation Centre Trust for 10 years and continuously helped us to drive the organisation in the right direction. Helen was also vital to the success of the ROC International Garden - a community garden project. Her visionary and inspirational leadership, commitment, dedication, collaborative spirit, passion and advocacy skills, make her an outstanding nominee.
Nominated by The Refugee Orientation Centre Trust
Kara has been volunteering with Special Olympics Waikato for 5 years in various roles including Chairperson. She is a wonder-woman that achieves so much and Special Olympics Waikato would be lost without her leadership.
Nominated by Special Olympics Waikato
Laura set up the Cake Detective Charitable Trust in 2019 and she volunteers 40 hours per week. Laura's exceptional cakes bring joy to children and alleviate stress and financial burden. L is for lucky, A is for activities, U is for unite, R is for romp (having fun), A is for amenable (easy-going)!
Nominated by The Cake Detective Charitable Trust
Mike volunteers with the Civil Defence and Emergency Management Group that takes care of people in an emergency. Mike is a respectful, collaborative and considerate person and a highly experienced subject matter expert in radio communications. He is dependable, trustworthy and always ready to help.
Nominated by Waikato Civil Defence and Emergency Management Group
Robert has been volunteering with Hato Hone St John for 18 years and is currently the Deputy Chairman of the Area Committee. He is very humble and puts his hand up to volunteer willingly and without complaint to support his community and the youth of Waihii. Robert brings knowledge into the community by delivering the 3 steps for life programme, which is very powerful in saving lives. Robert is caring and community minded and is a decent bloke who just keeps on giving.
Nominated by The Order of St John
Robin has been with the Cambridge Athletics and Harriers Club for over 8 years coaching secondary school athletes and his approach has seen the largest group of athletes competing than in past years. Robin has strong values and models what a calm, child-centred sport athletics can be. Athletes in the Waikato are encouraged to do their best in a supportive environment. The Waikato Region is a better place because of Robin.
Nominated by Cambridge Athletics and Harriers Club Inc.
Sammy has been mentoring rangatahi at Ngaaruawaahia High School for 5 years. Last year one of Sammy's mentees won a National Excellence Award which is a testament to her ability to inspire rangatahi to work towards their goals. Sammy contributes positively to her community and is a great role model for our future leaders.
Nominated by Graeme Dingle Foundation
Samuel has volunteered at the NZ Red Cross Op Shop in Frankton for over 11 years, averaging at least 20 hours per week. Samuel volunteers around Hamilton and the greater Waikato Region working alongside new volunteers, showing them the ropes. He fully embraces his ability to make those around him feel a sense of belonging which makes volunteers, staff and customers feel welcomed, valued, and seen for their identities.
Nominated by NZ Red Cross
Volunteers like Shepherd are one in a million. He has been an instrumental figure in educating students about our native forests through his presentation “From the Roots Up’. Shepherd is a dedicated and enthusiastic conservation volunteer supporting projects to re-establish native bush and increasing the diversity of birds back to the city.
Nominated by Hamilton City Council - Parks & Recreation
Stephen has been with English Language Partners for 5 years. He embodies the qualities of kindness, patience, commitment, reliability and respect for his learners, making him an exceptional volunteer. It takes a lot of time to prepare a lesson, drive to a student's house, deliver the lesson and drive home for 5 different students every week, and then do it all again the next week. Stephen makes New Zealand a better and friendlier place for his students.
Nominated by English Language Partners Waikato
Wendy joined Pregnancy Counselling Services in 2005 and has served in various roles at a local and national level with distinction, volunteering an average of 20 hours per week. As a counselling support volunteer, Wendy is a calm influence and a supportive voice. Wendy continues to give of her time, talents, and energy to the many clients she has helped over the years. She is always there when needed, quiet yet confident, and with no signs of stopping.
Nominated by Pregnancy Counselling Services - Hamilton
On behalf of Volunteering Waikato - Te Ohu Tuuao o Waikato - congratulations on your nomination and thank you for volunteering in our communities!