Last year Volunteer Wellington interviewed more than 500 new migrants representing 60 ethnicities, who were seeking volunteer roles with local community organisations. Their motives included finding out about the local work scene, practicing – and understanding – Kiwi English, making new friends, and feeling they belonged in a new environment.
To recognize this contribution and to encourage others to become involved in community activity, a Volunteer Connect Award certificate for newcomers is presented twice a year to those who have completed an unusual assignment and/or a certain amount of volunteering hours; as well as attended local seminars and events – and spread the word to family and friends about the value of ‘connecting through volunteering.’
The Volunteer Connect Award for new migrants has been running for three years, a partnership between Volunteer Wellington, Wellington Settlement Support and Wellington Central Citizens Advice Bureau.
The most recent presentation took place last week (Wednesday 12 June 2013) at Settlement Support’s Local Settlement Network Meeting. This was a celebratory lunch time event with the guest speaker Judi Altinkaya, National Manager of the Settlement Unit of the Ministry of Business Innovation and Employment, presenting the certificates.