Volunteering Waikato Volunteer Team

Volunteering Waikato Volunteer Team


Eileen has been part of the interviewing team for some ten years. Souveniered from London many years ago, Eileen has had a long career that has encompassed Husband and child rearing, Nursing and teaching in the secondary and tertiary sector with the odd foray into volunteering. On retiring from the paid workforce, it seemed a natural progression to become involved with an organisation that works closely with people. VW provides the interesting challenge of not knowing who one is going to meet and working towards a satisfying outcome for the clients. Eileen’s interests include family, Dogs, theatre and dance, playing bridge and travelling in lovely New Zealand and overseas.


Paula was born and bred in Hamilton and has lived here most of her life. Before having her daughter Paula worked as a PA, and appreciates being able to use those skills in her role at Volunteering Waikato, as this keeps her skills current. In her previous role Paula was involved in the recruitment of new staff, and find that these HR skills are very useful for her role as one of our Interviewing team. Paula has been part of this team since early 2011, she enjoys travelling, going to the gym, and family. She currently also volunteers for Epilepsy New Zealand, and previously volunteered at Waikato Hospital and Rhode St School.


I have been with VW since 2014 and I love my role which compliments my psychology studies. We meet a broad cross-section of people and I find it interesting getting to know them and their reasons for volunteering. It is satisfying to hear of volunteering that has facilitated beneficial outcomes, whether it is gaining the good feeling one gets from helping others, a sense of achievement from learning new things or sometimes the opportunity to gain paid employment. I also enjoy getting to work with our really lovely team of people every week in the office. I see volunteering as a win/win, and it’s great to be part of helping to make this happen in our community.


Accounts Volunteer
By far our longest serving volunteer, Ruth has been with Volunteering Waikato since 1994, taking care of our accounts. She looks after our MYOB, reconciliations, banking and other accounting type things that confuse the rest of us. Before retiring Ruth worked for 35 years in an office for the combined Rural Bank and Housing Corporation. She continues in her voluntary role to ‘keep her brain ticking over’, she loves gardening, watching sport and chocolate! Ruth enjoys the atmosphere in our offices, describing it as ‘relaxing’. She has seen a lot of change over the years and appreciates the changes that technology and maturity of the organisation have brought.


Data Entry
Angela has been volunteering here in a data entry role for more than 10 years, having studied computer administration at Wintec. She previously worked in a similar role for the Department of Social Welfare and Inland Revenue. During her ten years with Volunteering Waikato Angela has seen a huge change, including increased professionalism, and the regionalisation of our services. Her role has also changed in recent years due to the increased move to online services and away from paper-based systems. Angela enjoys walking, catching up with friends, spending time watching Youtube videos and listening to music from the 70s and 80s.


Member Services
Ten years ago Tricia left paid employment, saw an advertisement for a voluntary role with the VW team, and has been here ever since - in a variety of roles. Currently she works with the Member Services team, and enjoys having regular contact with our Member Organisations, and with the wider Volunteering Waikato team. Her annual role of supervising the Christmas Gift Wrapping at The Base is however her favourite role. Tricia is a hands-on grandparent of four, she loves bowls, sports (participating and watching), quiz nights – and Elvis. Tricia believes that nothing is too hard, and “Life is too short to be taken too seriously!”


Member Services
Ivy joined our new Member Services team just after it was formed in 2015. Having recently retired with her husband from dairy farming she was looking to do something different with her time, something that would stretch her and keep her engaging with different people. She enjoys chatting to our clients over the phone, and loves providing great customer service. Ivy also volunteers at Cambridge I-Site, and enjoys road cycling, mountain biking, gardening and landscaping. Although born in Queensland, Ivy has been in New Zealand since 1976 and has recently become a New Zealand citizen.


Client Services
Jan moved to Hamilton from Wellington 11 years ago, to be with her now-husband, Kevin. She has a background in market research and call centre work having worked for Colmar Brunton and Teleflora. Jan has been with the team since October 2011, “I love the environment at Volunteering Waikato, everyone is so friendly.” Jan initially came to Volunteering Waikato looking for a way to help the community. Her role as Client Services is a perfect role for Jan as she enjoys phone work. Jan loves her garden, loves to travel – particularly to Europe - and loves reading. She has two children, four grandchildren and one great granddaughter.


Client Services
Kia orana - I am Susan and I have recently moved from Wellington to Hamilton and have become slowly acquainted with the wonderful River walks and cheaper public transport. I am a Mother, Grandmother and live here with family, including two of my four grandchildren. My parents came over from the Cook Islands in the 1950’s to work and make a better life for themselves and family. My children, grandchildren and I were born here in Aotearoa. I do like the warmer weather and that Hamilton is so central. As I am getting my bearings, joined the library, volunteer as a tutor at Literacy Waikato and here at Volunteering Waikato, I am beginning to feel a sense of settling in.


Jenny recently retired after many years working in the finance and insurance industry. Over the years she has volunteered for many organisations - sporting clubs, school events, committees, fundraising - always enjoying the experience and being involved. She is looking forward to her new role as an Interviewer, where she can help clients into roles they will enjoy. In her spare time Jenny can be found in her gardening, biking, walking, at speedway or hanging out with family, friends and her grandies. She has recently become a volunteer for Riding for the Disabled and Hamilton Netball, both organisations she has a passion for.


Tiffany was born and brought up in Hamilton. She enjoys learning and recently returned to university to study postgraduate science. Having done a lot of volunteering in the past, including the Ronald McDonald House and NZ Red Cross, she has been looking for a new challenge. She would love to have the opportunity to help others get the same benefits and enjoyment that she got from her voluntary roles. Tiffany is therefore grateful for the chance to be an interviewer for Volunteering Waikato and to have the privilege of contributing to the community.


Having just moved from Auckland to Hamilton earlier this year, I am enjoying the more laid back lifestyle here. I enjoy reading, puzzles, hiking and travelling - both oveaseas and within lovely New Zealand. Coming from academia where I have worked as a research fellow for over 9 years, mainly conducting basic research in a molecular and cellular biology laboratory and mentoring postgraduate research students, I look forward to meeting and interacting with people from diverse walks of life beyond my usual scientific research and academic settings. I am excited by this opportunity to contribute to the community and look forward to an enriching experience at Volunteering Waikato.


Michael is studying master of human resource management at University of Waikato, he has worked around 8 years in consulting and HR field before he came to New Zealand. Michael enjoys talking with people from diverse background and learning from each other. Volunteering Waikato provides an exciting challenge of talking with different people and figuring out the best outcome for all clients. He appreciates the opportunity of being an interviewer that can keep practicing his HR skills and learning new things at Volunteering Waikato. He says: “Being a volunteer is a good way to support others and improve yourself.”


I retired from full time work in October 2017 and wanted to do some voluntary work. In my position as an interviewer for Volunteering Waikato I meet some very interesting people.
I am a wife, mum to two grown up children and Nana to four grand children. They all live in Hamilton which is great for me so I can see them quite frequently. When I am not with family I am a member of the Waikato Embroiderers Guild and can often be found with needle in hand. I also like overseas travel.


I recently retired after working for 20 years at the University of Waikato, and with time, skills and energy up my sleeve I began looking for a volunteering role for myself.
In the process, I discovered Volunteering Waikato and experienced firsthand how the staff work to assist volunteers to find roles that best suit their individual skill sets, their time availability and their personal preferences.
Now I’m lucky enough to have joined the Volunteering Waikato team myself, as an interviewer - meeting and getting to know volunteers, and helping to find the very best volunteering opportunities for them.


Hola! I'm Shashank, a student of Psychology and Human Resource Management at the university
and I’m originally from India. I chose my course of study because I have always wanted to find a way to use my strengths to help people accomplish more.
Having been here for a couple of years, I’d like to believe I’ve had some wonderful adventures and learned so much from the people here. In my time here I have learned that I love to hike and just be in the outdoors!


Volunteering is something I am very passionate about and I am so grateful to be able to continue my journey here at VW. I would love to start my own not-for-profit organization one day so I can’t wait to learn more, help out and meet new people! This coming April 2019 I will graduate from my Business Management Studies degree Majoring in Economics. During my tertiary studies I was lucky to spend two semesters in Beijing. While I was in China, I taught English and this was definitely my favourite volunteering experience. In my spare time I enjoy taking my daughter for hikes, going to the gym, listening to music and studying Mandarin.


Researcher & Gift Wrap Supervisor
Carol has been in the not for profit sector for several years and has recently returned to Volunteering Waikato as a researcher. Carol has a worked for Dress for Success, Volunteering Waikato as the Regional Coordinator and the Red Cross Shop in Hamilton East and also volunteers as a Christmas gift wrapping supervisor at The Base. Carol and her husband have a business in Frankton that keeps her on her toes and in her spare time she loves to be with her four granddaughters. Carol is passionate about her family including her cat Poppy Paris Rose Yellow (named by the grandchildren). She values the work that volunteers do in our community and loves meeting new people.
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