More than half of the adult population in New Zealand are volunteers, and the majority are motivated by a desire to give back to the community.

Michelle Kitney, Chief Executive of Volunteering New Zealand says 5 December, International Volunteer Day, is an opportunity to recognise the value volunteers bring to communities.

“The theme ‘solidarity through volunteering’, speaks to the power we have when we work together. Over the past two years many people helped others in generous, collaborative and innovative ways.”

Recent research by Statistics New Zealand <link> shows that 50.9% of people over 15 years of age have volunteered in the previous month, either for an organisation or directly helping other people.

Surveys of volunteers by Volunteering New Zealand identified a desire to contribute to the community as the key motivator, while the opportunity to make friends was also important.

“Despite the challenges to community organisations and volunteers from the Covid-19 pandemic, the state of volunteering in Aotearoa is generally healthy. Volunteering needs to be well-managed and resourced in order to make the greatest contribution to society. We will continue to advocate for this,” Michelle Kitney says.

Volunteering New Zealand is currently reviewing Best Practice Guidelines for volunteer-involving organisations. Volunteer managers and co-ordinators are encouraged to have their say in a survey.

Source – Volunteering New Zealand Media Release