About Us

Our Mission, Vision and Values

Our Mission Statement

Volunteering Otago seeks to celebrate, support, highlight and motivate volunteering in the Otago community organisations that rely on volunteers by connecting them with people who are willing to offer their skills and energy. We provide training, advice, advocacy, resources and recognition for individuals and community organisations involved in volunteering.

Our Vision

Supportive interdependent communities where volunteering is recognised and respected, is life-enhancing for the individual, and advances the common good.

Our Values


We empower people to achieve rewarding and beneficial volunteering experiences for them and the community. We empower organisations to provide rewarding and beneficial volunteering experiences for people in the community.


We recognise the diversity of volunteers and volunteer-involving organisations and are open to everyone.


We act ethically, openly and transparently in all that we do.

Common Good 

We work for the common good of the community.

Meet our Board of Trustees

Robyn Zink

I joined the board of Volunteering Otago in 2015 because I believe that volunteering contributes to building strong, resilient communities. My background is in education and research. I have a particular interest in governance in the not-for-profit sector.



Richard Marlow

Hi, I’m Richie and have been a member of the Volunteering Otago board since 2015 and Co-chair since early 2016. I come from a background in non-profits, having previously been with the Red Cross as the local programmes coordinator, as well as an active volunteer in Dunedin LandSAR (search and rescue). I am excited to be a part of the Volunteering Otago family and look forward to seeing volunteering thrive in our community.


David Horne

Vice Chair and Minutes Secretary
David is a retired school principal. He began volunteering with Volunteering Otago in 1993. He also volunteers with 24 different community organisations in Dunedin. One of David’s hobbies is overseas travelling. David has been to 264 different countries in the world.

Paul Naidu

Paul has been involved in the community sector for several decades. He has been on Executive Committees and volunteered for several community organisations. Paul has a graduate Diploma in Not-for-Profit Management and has excellent understanding of community issues. He is passionate about the community and empowering organisations and individuals.


Marieke Mahoney

I have reecently moved to Dunedin with my young family and have joined the board of Volunteering Otago as I believe strongly in the benefits of volunteering for organisations, individuals and the wider community within which we live. I have completed my MBA at the University and worked in a variety of commercial roles in Germany and New Zealand.

Pip du Mez

Pip is a Chartered Accountant at a local accounting firm, working with commerical, rural and not for profit clients . She orginally came on board with Volunteering Otago to help out with a change in Treasurer and ended up taking the job on herself and became a Board Member in early 2017.

Meet our Staff

Graham Copson, Manager

Graham Copson


Graham was born in the UK, but grew up and studied in Dunedin.  He has worked in the education, IT and volunteer sectors both in New Zealand and internationally.



Claire Van Loon Sim

Supported Volunteering Coordinator & Office Volunteer Coordinator
Claire is a kiwi born of English and Dutch heritage. Working in the Health and Disability field since she was a teenager Claire began working with volunteers in the mid 1990’s.


03 471 6202

Gillian White

Volunteering Central Senior Project Coordinator
UK born Gilliam has worked for Volunteering Central since its inception in 2011. She has worked with volunteers for twelve years in a range of roles, including full time volunteering, offender programmes and social service settings.


027 506 5705

Trudy Anderson

Volunteering Central Coordinator 
Trudy joined Volunteering Central in April 2013. Trudy is a long term local having grown up in Alexandra and returned after studying in Dunedin. Trudy spent 10 years working for the Department of Conservation and has two preschoolers to keep her busy.



Graham Patterson

Front Office
I have the pleasure of working in the office at Volunteering Otago each Wednesday. I can also be found most Thursdays at Volunteering Otago’s promotional table at the public library. Why don’t you call in and see me and I can help you get connected with some rewarding community based volunteer work where you can meet like-minded and interesting people?

Nola Crewe

Front Office
I enjoy meeting people of all ages and backgrounds and this role varies in tasks which is interesting. The team are welcoming and the atmosphere is great. Come along and see what we have to offer.

Sarah Jones

Front Officer
It is a lovely team here at Volunteering Otago – really good people to work with. I enjoy working with volunteers. It is great to meet local people and contribute to their community and international visitors who so often choose to give their skills during travels.

Wai Sum

Database Support
I have been working with Volunteering Otago since 2012. I enjoy being part the  fun team here & helping people from all walks of life. I like being part of the community, giving back by being of service to others.


Hugh Newbury

Database Support
I was born in Dunedin and have been volunteering at Volunteering Otago since 2014. Prior to this I had been teaching English in Taiwan for 6 years. I enjoy helping people find volunteer roles.

Harue Shoji

Front Office / Database Support
I’m passionate about helping people. I have been getting involved in the community in recent years and very much enjoy it. It’s such a great feeling to achieve jobs so people are happy.

Holly Meyer

Front Office / Database Support
I have lived in Dunedin since 2000 ans in 2010 I graduated from the University of Otago with a Bachelor of Arts in History.


Michella Van Nugteren

President, CEO, Theme UI/UX Designer
I have lived in Dunedin all of my life. I really like helping people and the team here are really friendly.

Glenn Walker

Organisation Account Manager 
I am originally from Canterbury, coming to Dunedin to study. During my time here I have worked at the university teaching as well as completing a PhD.

Contact Us

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