Meari is heavily involved with the St Vincent De Paul Fullstop Van and Loaves and Fishes. Two very important initiatives dedicated to providing food to children throughout Tauranga who would otherwise go without. She has always been a giving person volunteering like any mother would at school events, swimming club and Surf Lifesaving carnivals. It wasn’t until she saw a sign advertising full stop in the church bulletin that she got heavily involved in volunteering.
Meari has seen a lot of young people involved with the St Vincent de Paul initiatives. Meari encourages all young people to get out and volunteer. “Get involved with anything and everything because time goes by so fast. Get involved even if it is just small steps”. Meari highlighted that everything you do, whether it small or big, done right can make a huge difference in the lives of others.
Meari’s top tips for young volunteers
- Don’t waste your time get involved as soon as you can.
- Balance your school work, sport and volunteering. Volunteering doesn’t mean giving up your interests, instead use your interests in a positive way to help others.
- Don’t feel you can only help by doing something big, even small things make a big difference.
- If you are able to let giving into your life, thrive on it and build from it.
Miranda Cassidy is a World Vision Youth Ambassador. She was lucky enough to travel to Jordan to see the Syrian refugee crisis and the impact of the 40 Hour Famine first hand. Miranda has become a voice for the people she met in Jordan and is still continuing her role.
Miranda started volunteering by fundraising for causes she believed in. For her, this was Orange Friday- an initiative which raises money for families where domestic violence is a problem. She then went on to participate in the 40 Hour Famine and from there applied to be a World Vision Youth Ambassador. By joining World Vision Miranda has gained so many new positive experiences and skills. She said that “being part of World Vision means that you are part of a family”. It has changed the way she perceives the world and situations and has helped her define what she wants for her future. Miranda has leant so much and her public speaking skills have improved a lot due to her role.
When asked if she would recommend volunteering to other you people, Miranda said she totally would. “I think it’s a great way, a hands on way to look at the bigger picture, and things that affect our society or world. It creates understanding not just only of the situations you are working in but also of yourself. Your wants, dreams and values. Knowing these things is so helpful when trying to figure out your place in the world. Volunteering has honestly been so valuable for me.”