Kick off the year as a vol­un­teer

Matamata Chronicle - - Your Paper, Your Place - REX­INE HAWES

Was your New Year’s res­o­lu­tion to try some­thing new, or give back to your com­mu­nity?

The Mata­mata Ci­ti­zens Ad­vice Bureau could be the ideal place for you to meet your goal. And it couldn’t be a bet­ter time to sign up, with the or­gan­i­sa­tion hold­ing its aware­ness week from March 13-17, with a fo­cus on re­cruit­ment.

Mata­mata’s CAB train­ing co­or­di­na­tor Colin McDon­ald has been in­volved with the or­gan­i­sa­tion for two years.

He joined to meet new peo­ple and to aid his com­mu­nity.

‘‘I re­ally like help­ing peo­ple and I get to meet a lot of new peo­ple too. I en­joy the ca­ma­raderie and the chal­lenge of the role.

‘‘On any given day, you could be asked about ten­ancy rights, lo­cat­ing a sup­port group or hav­ing doc­u­ments signed by a JP, to find­ing out whether a per­son is en­ti­tled to a ben­e­fit.

‘‘It’s a place where peo­ple can come if they need more in­for­ma­tion to solve a prob­lem. We em­power them, to have the knowl­edge and the in­for­ma­tion to get a good re­sult.

McDon­ald is one of 25 Mata­mata CAB mem­bers, but he would love to see more peo­ple get in­volved so they could make CAB ser­vices more ac­ces­si­ble to the com­mu­nity.

‘‘Right now we are re­stricted to our hours we can open. The hours are from 10am-2pm they used to be longer but we had more vol­un­teers then.’’

McDon­ald is cur­rently train­ing four new vol­un­teers. He said the train­ing is not dif­fi­cult and can be done to suit the vol­un­teer’s level of com­mit­ment.’’

He said the CAB has a mix­ture of women and men but would love to have a more di­verse range of ages.

‘‘We tend to at­tract re­tired peo­ple but it would re­ally suit some­one work­ing part-time or new to town.’’

REX­INE HAWES

Mata­mata CAB vol­un­teers An­gela Archer and Colin McDon­ald.

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