Last year during lockdown Te Ara Korowai volunteers, plus our staff, worked volunteer hours to ensure that all our members were safe and supported. Our volunteer team dropped art supplies to their letterboxes, travelled to the centre (as essential service volunteers) to make daily calls to those who were isolated and vulnerable. For many this centre is their only support system as the team knew it was a challenging time for many of our members, especially those living alone. All staff worked well above their paid hours to ensure the members were safe, connected and participating in the online zoom classes run by the centre. Our volunteers and our staff have always worked together as a supportive unit.
On a daily basis this centre relies on volunteers to run classes such as reiki and mindful movement and act as tutor support for our busy art tutors. We have an amazing team of dedicated fundraising volunteers who work together on fundraising events and activities to support the operational costs of our centre. We have also recently held a Working Bee where, despite the on and off rain, volunteers showed up to garden, paint and tidy up the centre in preparation for our Open Day.
Our volunteer team benefits our community as we are able to continue to offer our mental health and wellbeing classes and workshops for free, to members in our community who are marginalised due to mental health or disability. Our volunteers form an important part of our member’s support systems and they come to know each other well, share experiences and connection and this is of great value to our members. Because we are a not for profit organisation our volunteers perform roles and functions that would otherwise be unable to occur. Volunteers are the heart of this organisation and support our activities, classes, workshops and our mission in so many ways, we would be lost without them!
Entered as part of the Volunteer Kāpiti Volunteer Story Competition to celebrate National Volunteer Week.