Students from Aquinas College have ditched the school books for the day and are out in the community volunteering this week.
It’s Youth Volunteering Week, and the students are spending the day doing service for others. Four of them are at The Kollective getting messy cleaning chairs used by the many social agencies which work at the collaborative hub. They also enjoyed some donuts from the Historic Village, and set up the Village classroom, filming their activities during the day for their school.
Emma Page, 13, Mia Lowe, 13, Camryn Guthrie, 14, and Ivy Barrett-Hodgson, 13, were happily scrubbing and vacuuming, and all say they really enjoy their volunteer day.
Ivy said it’s part of their school’s ethos to learn to serve others and to learn to be a positive member of the community.
“We learn to give back to those who supported us during our school years.”
They all volunteer in other ways as well. Ivy and Emma are trainee lifeguards and coach water polo, volunteer as netball umpires and Camryn is a hockey umpire.
“Volunteering can take you places too,” Ivy says. Others in their class are volunteering in the children’s ward at Tauranga Hospital, at primary schools and daycares, in op shops and many other areas outside their own homes.
SociaLink Volunteering Services – Western Bay of Plenty, is now operated under SociaLink which supports the Western Bay of Plenty social and community sector.
Manager Angela Wallace says Youth Volunteering Week encourages young people to volunteer throughout their lives and find the satisfaction of giving back to others.