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 TEAM category celebrates Teams of 2 or more volunteers, and the nominees are:
ACCOUNTING TEAM - THE REFUGEE ORIENTATION CENTRE TRUST
The Refugee Orientation Centre Trust Accounting Team stands out due to their exceptional dedication, fresh knowledge, expertise and proactive approach. Their unwavering commitment and exceptional contributions have made a significant impact on the organisation's success and the community it serves.
Nominated by The Refugee Orientation Centre Trust
The EquiPotential Volunteer Team consists of 50 volunteers who volunteer more than 5,000 hours of time each year. They offer a huge range of skills including horse care, programme activities, secretarial work, financial work, maintenance and governance. The Team have the passion to help and transform others and believe that everyone has equal potential.
Nominated by EquiPotential NZ Inc.
FOOD SUPPORT TEAM - PUKETE NEIGHBOURHOOD HOUSE
The Food Support Team at the Pukete Neighbourhood House support the operation of the FreeStore serving up to 40 people per day with food to supplement their weekly budget due to the cost of living in Aotearoa. The Team is dedicated, passionate and empathetic - going above and beyond and helping out wherever there is a need with minimum fuss and supervision.
Nominated by Pukete Neighbourhood House
FRONT AND BACK OF HOUSE - THAMES MUSEUM
The Thames Museum is run entirely by volunteers - a Team of 29 who provide an invaluable service for the collection, preservation and display of the history of Thames to share with locals and tourists. Even through the pandemic or terrible weather, their commitment to the museum doesn't falter and they make visiting the museum a real pleasure.
Nominated by Thames Museum Te Whare Taonga o te Kauaeranga
HAMILTON LAKE PARKRUN - RUN DIRECTORS TEAM
The Hamilton Lake parkrun is managed and coordinated completely by a Team of volunteers, providing a free opportunity for more than 200 people to engage in a weekly 5km run or walk to improve their health and wellbeing. The Run Director Team of 9 volunteers manage the full organisation and facilitation of the event and their dedication makes parkrun a huge asset to our Hamilton community.
Nominated by Hamilton Lake parkrun
ST JOHN THAMES AND PAEROA HEALTH SHUTTLES
The St John Thames/Paeroa Health Shuttles Team of 30 volunteers drive health shuttles 52 weeks of the year including Christmas Day. In 2022 the Team drove 3 1/2 times around the equator! The Team get people to and from their medical appointments and community events enabling them to participate in their community - and giving people the mind blowing ability to live longer in their own homes.
Nominated by Hato Hone St John
IHC VOLUNTEER PROGRAMME HAMILTON
The IHC Volunteer Programme Team consists of 45 incredible volunteers that take time out of their busy lives to spend with someone they don't know - committing to at least one year with the programme. The Team are patient, flexible, non-judgemental and have excellent communication skills to gain their friend's trust - helping them feel happy, safe and proud to have a friend. Social contact and friendship is so important for everyone.
Nominated by IHC New Zealand Inc.
INSIGHT ENDOMETRIOSIS EXPO AMBASSADORS
The Team of 13 Insight Endometriosis Expo Ambassadors are an essential part of supporting the organisation's stall at expos, ensuring that people who enquire about Endometriosis get their questions answered clearly and accurately, feel supported, and get advice on how to access further support. They demonstrate a high level of customer service, empathy and the ability think on their feet with a smile on their faces.
Nominated by Insight Endometriosis
KIRIKIRIROA & ST PETER’S SCOUT GROUP KAIARAHI AND SUPPORT TEAM
The Kaiarahi undergo training to deliver scouting and adventure courses to youth. The Support Team assist in the delivery of scouting including finances, fundraising and property. Scouting is youth led, adult supported, and all adults volunteering are committed to being the best version of themselves in order to inspire the youth they are working with.
Nominated by Kirikiriroa & St Peter’s Scout Group
MORRINSVILLE SPCA TEAM
The Morrinsville SPCA Team of 14 volunteers are all involved in the daily running of the Op Shop, where donated goods are sold to support the wellbeing of animals. The Team go the extra mile to make sure the shop is well stocked, clean, presentable and fun for them and customers. All kinds of animals in our community ultimately benefit from their input.
Nominated by Morrinsville SPCA Op Shop
PORT WAIKATO VOLUNTEER FIRE BRIGADE
The Port Waikato Volunteer Fire Brigade has 16 volunteer members who give their time and energy assisting the community in times of need. This may be for a fire related incident, a medical emergency, traffic accident, saving lives, saving homes or pre-empting harm to residents from downed power lines and local bush fires.
Nominated by Port Waikato Residents & Ratepayers Association
PREDATOR FREE CAMBRIDGE TRAPPING VOLUNTEERS
More than 50 Predator Free Cambridge trapping volunteers maintain over 300 traps over 10 sites around the Cambridge area to remove predators species and protect our native animals. Staying active, being out in nature, meeting like-minded people, feeling part of 'something bigger' and participating in something meaningful are important aspects of being a trapping volunteer.
Nominated by Go Eco
PREDATOR FREE MATAMATA TRAP BUILDERS
Vic Stone-Davies and Peter McCabe from Predator Free Matamata Trap Builders have made over 500 boxes to be used in the trapping of predators in Matamata. They are selfless, highly capable and personable, self-starters, who are solution focussed and need little guidance. They both have a deep concern for the environment and Transition Matamata could not have made a fraction of the impact it has if it was not for the tireless work of Vic and Peter.
Nominated by Transition Matamata
RED CROSS HAMILTON BOOK SHOP
The Red Cross Hamilton Book Group is a group of volunteers who organise awesome book sales to fundraise - with some of the Team having volunteered for over 20 years. The Team source books, identify venues, establish dates, organise transport and source volunteers to fill gaps where needed. Services like Meals on Wheels would not be possible without the funds they raise.
Nominated by New Zealand Red Cross
SPRING HILL CORRECTIONAL FACILITY COMMUNITY VOLUNTEERS FITNESS PROGRAMME
Lance and Valencia volunteer by facilitating fitness programmes for men inside the Spring Hill Correctional Facility. They make the programme accessible to all, regardless of fitness level or circumstances whilst building a sense of community and connection among participants, as well as promoting physical fitness and wellness. Their work has made a difference in the lives of many and their passion for promoting health and wellness is an inspiration to others.
Nominated by Spring Hill Correctional Facility
SPECIAL OLYMPICS WAIKATO COACHES
Special Olympics Waikato has 8 volunteers that coach and support athletes in a range of sports including swimming, football, athletics, equestrian, ten pin bowling and basketball. The volunteer coaches enable athletes to have a chance at competing and also the chance to be part of a Team. The coaches played an integral role in enabling 60 Special Olympics Waikato athletes to compete in the 2022 Special Olympics National Summer Games in Hamilton.
Nominated by Special Olympics Waikato
TE AROHA & DISTRICT RDA VOLUNTEERS
The volunteers for Te Aroha and District RDA range from Side Walkers to President, Horse Feeders to Funding Coordinators. The Team are a group of diverse people who come together to bring smiles to riders' faces and help them achieve their goals. They epitomize safety, teamwork, respect, quality and enjoyment and they enable riders with disabilities or specific challenges or needs to interact with horses and improve their health and wellbeing outcomes.
Nominated by Te Aroha and District RDA Committee
TE AWAMUTU HEALTH SHUTTLE VOLUNTEER TEAM
The Te Awamutu Health Shuttle Volunteer Team of 45 volunteers transport more than 1,300 community members annually to medical appointments, travelling more than 56,000 km's per year. The Team know they are not just providing transport but moral support too, and ensure those who travel in the Health Shuttle are comfortable. They make an immeasurably positive difference to the lives of people in the community each year.
Nominated by Te Awamutu Community Health Transport Trust
TE KOORAHA MARAE TRUSTEES
The Trustees of Te Kooraha Marae in Tahaaroa are a dedicated and passionate Team of 8 volunteers that have created a place where more than 2,000 descendants can feel safe physically, emotionally and spiritually. The Trustees are driven to improve the lives of their members and the quality of life enjoyed by the hapori in their little corner of Aotearoa, with Te Kooraha Marae being a cultural hub for the small community of Tahaaroa.
Nominated by Ngaa Uri o Te Kooraha Marae, Tahaaroa
THAMES MEALS ON WHEELS
For the last 9 years, Thames Meals on Wheels has been a completely volunteer managed, self-sustained and organised group of people from the Thames community, with 2 coordinators and 70 drivers keeping the service going. A "once a day" knock on the door and a chat with a familiar friendly face can make all the difference to someone's day. They are a superstar team demonstrating how informal groups can organise themselves to make a positive impact.
Nominated by Te Whatu Ora Health New Zealand - Waikato
THE CAKE DETECTIVE TEAM
The Cake Detective Team play a crucial role in donating birthday cakes to some of the most vulnerable children in our community, creating beautiful memories for children and young people. Kim is the administrator, Tasha and Grace are decorators and Kayle is the social media administrator. Their pride in their work is inspiring and each of them play a vital role in ensuring the charity’s success.
Nominated by The Cake Detective Charitable Trust
TRANSFORMATION FROM ROOTS UP HAMILTON
The Transformation From Roots Up group are a team of volunteers and helpers that have planted over 1 hectare of nearly 10,000 native plants, removed pests/weeds, whilst educating people about important issues affecting our ecosystem. This group exemplifies the characteristic of why volunteering is important to a thriving community. Without volunteers many activities and functions in our city would cease.
Nominated by Hamilton City Council - Parks and Recreation
TREVOR JONES AND RUSSELL ALDRIDGE
Trevor Jones and Russell Aldridge volunteer by doing the repairs and maintenance at the Te Kuiti Museum and Gallery to enable the Trustees to keep the building secure and remain open to the public. They drop everything to fix problems, like major work to fix doors as a result of ram raids. Trevor and Russell are irreplaceable and always go the extra mile.
Nominated by Te Kuiti & District Historical Charitable Trust
WESTERN FRUIT AND VEGGIE PACKERS, HAMILTON
Every Wednesday, the Western Fruit and Veggie Packers Team pack over 250 bags of fresh, healthy and nutritious seasonal produce which enables people in the community to purchase good food at a good price - making a difference to households of community members. Without this dream team of volunteers, it would be very difficult to provide this service.
Nominated by Western Community Centre
On behalf of Volunteering Waikato - Te Ohu Tuuao o Waikato - congratulations on your nomination and thank you for volunteering in our communities!