Photo by Gustavo Acero

Add value to your Life – Volunteer in New Zealand

For many these statistics are real and you should really ask yourself if you really want to ride the storm out or try one of the many great volunteer opportunities. As reliable job prospects waver, volunteering is a realistic option that allows you to personally contribute to a better and healthier society. Today, you can join over a million New Zealanders who have taken to volunteer on various projects within their communities.

Why Volunteer?

Volunteering remains a great way to brighten future career prospects and is thus well worth the investment. For these assignments the main let down is pay, but the upside is learning many new skills and enhancement of social connections which is vital to securing meaningful paid employment. In addition to this, volunteering opens doors to programs, which incorporate adventure in volunteering providing travel as an option to many destinations including New Zealand.

Common Volunteer Projects

Volunteers in New Zealand can pick from a variety of projects including social work. This may include working alongside persons with special needs. Common task for volunteers include cooking and kitchen chores, laundry, other household chores such as cleaning and just being good company.

Other volunteer projects involve farm work and include activities such as tending, cattle, horses, sheep and related tasks. In many cases a volunteer in such projects is housed by the family and will get a first-hand look into alternative lifestyles. On many such farms a days’ work involves milking cattle, cleaning sheds, feeding animals, driving and operating tractors and other farm machinery. The farm also provides lots of space for other activities like riding motorbikes and many other outdoor activities.

Lastly volunteers can work on environmental projects. In this case volunteers are mostly organized in teams each assigned a separate task such as replanting trees, restoration and maintenance of the environment. In addition to these tasks such groups often engage in educating the local community and neighboring communities on environmental standards. Some environmental projects in the country also engage volunteers in activities revolving around the country’s native animals. Regardless of the project you select volunteering is more often than not a highly educative and informative experience for the participant.

Important Points to Observe

Volunteering is by nature meant to be service offered with no reward or gain. Just as with paid jobs all volunteers must ensure they complete the terms and any conditions stipulated in the agreements. For people holding working holiday, student and regular work visas, volunteering is permissible but unless you hold a work permit there should be no reward offered in return for your volunteer work.

Volunteers should always remember that any rewards for service comes with the risk breaching terms of their visa requirements where the visa does not permit work. Uniforms provided for activities may not be categorized as breaches of terms whereas as a bonus shopping voucher may be considered reward. Volunteers are thus cautioned to be wary of anything that could pose a risk to their documents. It may be worth mentioning that Willing Work on Organic farms commonly known as WWOOF is considered work and as such does not fall within the boundaries of volunteering. Such workers require valid work documents based on the fact they are offered food and accommodation. See here for further information.

Regardless of the project you set your mind to pursue, volunteering in New Zealand has the potential to provide a very enriching experience to you as a student or visitor to the country.



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