Community Scoop

Celebrating volunteers and working together

Sarah MacdonaldSarah Macdonald

Marketing and Membership Manager | Volunteering New Zealand

National Volunteer Week, 21-27 June 2020, will celebrate ‘Te Hua o te Mahi Tahi | The benefit of working together’.  Volunteering New Zealand is encouraging everyone to start planning NVW2020 celebrations and activities.

National Volunteer Week 2020 (NVW2020) is an opportunity for our 1 million volunteers to be recognised and celebrated! Volunteers contribute to 159 million hours per year, the value of this volunteer labour is estimated at $4 billion. Research also shows that if you live in a community with high levels of volunteering, even if you do not volunteer, your subjective wellbeing will tend to be increased by all that goodwill and social capital building around you.

The power and potential of volunteering, Mahi Aroha and social action shines through at times when our communities are stretched and challenged. New Zealand’s COVID-19 response has highlighted courage and kindness in uniting against COVID-19.

Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern has talked about Aotearoa, New Zealand’s ‘team of 5 million’ and what we have achieved by working together. This highlights how each one of us has the power to contribute to our communities. How we connect and contribute looks different for each of us, but the impact of our actions connects and sustains us all.

National Volunteer Week 2020 is an opportunity to recognise all volunteers – those that are volunteering currently, thinking about volunteering, or have volunteered in the past.

“Volunteers help shape the world we want to live in” says Volunteering New Zealand Chief Executive Michelle Kitney. “Working collaboratively as we come out of COVID-19 will make our communities stronger and volunteers will continue to play an integral role in this. Today we’re encouraging everyone to start planning their National Volunteer Week 2020 online events and celebrations – let’s celebrate the spirit of giving that has shone through during the COVID-19 response!”

Volunteering New Zealand have put together a selection of practical ideas for communities and community organisations to take part in National Volunteer Week. Some ideas include the importance of sharing stories about local volunteers, hosting virtual morning teas for volunteers, decorating neighbourhoods with thank you messages and collaborating with other community groups on a shared celebration.

‘Te Hua o te Mahi Tahi I The benefit of working together’. Let’s continue to work better together now and into the future. How can we sustain an environment that empowers this so we all benefit?

Volunteering New Zealand (VNZ) is the peak body for volunteering and volunteers in Aotearoa, New Zealand. Our mission is to support volunteers to enrich Aotearoa, New Zealand. We are kaitiaki of Mahi Aroha. VNZ works in a national advisory, sector leadership role and was part of the national volunteering response to COVID-19.

For more information and resources for National Volunteer Week:


This blog has been contributed by a member of the ComVoices network. The views presented here are not necessarily those of ComVoices.

ComVoices is a Wellington based network of national community and voluntary sector organisations. It was established so that sector organisations would have a more powerful voice at Government level and in the community.

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