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This week, Careerforce staff have given up their time and stepped away from their desks to help the sectors in which we support.

To celebrate Te Wiki Tūao ā-Motu National Volunteer Week (19 – 25 June), teams from across the country have rolled up their sleeves – literally – for a day with their local hospice or aged care facility. The initiative was met with a strong appreciation for the rewarding and often challenging tasks care and support workers do each day.

Running activities with Nurse Maude residents

Careerforce Christchurch team members with Nurse Maude Te Ora Programme Coordinator, Heidi Heim.

Careerforce Business Analyst Liz Jarmey accompanied her co-workers from the Christchurch office on Tuesday for an afternoon of board games and fingernail painting with the residents at Nurse Maude Hospital.

Liz said, “The diversional therapists and support workers are so passionate and invested in their work and it really shows when the residents tell you how much they felt cared for.”

Liz’s colleague, Susan Tattersall found it a huge privilege to get a “little peek” into the world of the staff at Nurse Maude. It’s a far cry from her role as a Senior Marketing and Communications Advisor.

“They do such an amazing job for our elderly and vulnerable, looking after their safety, wellbeing and happiness,” Susan said, “I so enjoyed chatting to the 80 and 90 somethings and hearing some of their fascinating and interesting stories and experiences. Thanks so much Nurse Maude for the awesome opportunity!”

Nurse Maude Retail and Volunteering Manager Marilyn Vickery said the staff appreciated the time and energy that the group put in with the residents: “Involving the wider community in what we do at Nurse Maude is always a pleasure and it was wonderful to have Careerforce here.”

Helping in the garden at Nelson Tasman Hospice

Meanwhile, three of Careerforce’s Nelson/Marlborough team turned into “wheelbarrow warriors” on Tuesday at Nelson Tasman Hospice.

Leanne Nicholas, Jemma Low and Eric Kneepkens spent a few hours in the sunshine helping to maintain the hospice’s grounds by transporting barrow-loads of bark up to the gardens to be spread.

Leanne, who is a Staff Assessor when she isn’t wheeling bark, said, “The gardens are stunning, and a few hours of our time to assist maintaining them is the least we could do to help out a service that does so much for those in their time of need.”

“As a lover of nature and gardens, I reflected on the importance the gardens play for people at the end of life stage, as it’s such a wonderful space to be and spend time with whānau,” Leanne said.

Apprenticeship Advisor Eric Kneepkens and Staff Assessor Leanne Nicholas loading up wheelbarrows at Nelson Tasman Hospice.

Workplace Advisor Jemma Low said each of their group had a special connection to hospice: “We have all had experiences where our families have been supported in hospices in other regions around New Zealand and the UK, so it was an organisation we all felt connected to supporting.”

Volunteering is important to Careerforce staff

Napier-based Staff Assessor Regan Cotter spent his volunteering day on Thursday helping in the Cranford Hospice Store – from breaking down boxes, moving furniture, cleaning fridges, sorting rubbish, restocking shelves and more.

Careerforce CEO Jane Wenman said, “It is important to our staff to contribute to our communities. By volunteering directly with our sectors we are able to reach out in a different way and give back to those who offer so much to New Zealand.”

For a day each year, Careerforce staff are given the opportunity to put down their laptop on a workday to go and support their communities. With a preference to volunteer within the sectors we support, our teams are always looking for volunteering opportunities.

If you would like a team of Careerforce staff to spend a day helping at your workplace or in your community, please email info@careerforce.org.nz