Volunteer to help former refugees

Our refugee support volunteers do an extraordinary job and are a core part of the services we offer to former refugees.

We love our volunteers

Our volunteers are a friendly face and supportive guide. After training, volunteers begin their placement with a newly arrived family or individual. They work in teams to provide support and often find they become good friends with their team members. Teams are decided upon volunteer availability. We also try to match people with complimentary skills.

Volunteer tasks may include:

  • Setting up a home for a refugee family/individual before they arrive
  • Helping the family enrol with schools and doctors
  • Budgeting, shopping and how to use an ATM machine
  • Showing the family how to use public transport
  • Social visits
  • Generally explaining how things work in New Zealand.

Hear from the Loulou family, former refugees, about their experience with their Red Cross volunteer:

Time commitment

The first 2-4 weeks of a placement are generally the busiest, filled with initial appointments and settling in tasks. After the first six weeks, less time is required as the family becomes more settled. By this stage volunteers typically spend time with their family or individual on a weekly basis.

Training

All volunteers take part in our comprehensive, multi-day training and are expected to attend each session. Training programmes are run in each of the resettlement areas, at varying times throughout the year. Volunteers also receive mentoring and support throughout their placement.

Each training programme covers a range of topics including:

  • An introduction to the refugee experience
  • The role of the refugee support volunteer teams and teamwork
  • Refugee health, well-being and education
  • Key support services
  • Culture

Upcoming training schedules

Auckland

All training sessions are held at Red Cross, 33 Lambie Drive, Manukau.

March 2019 Training Programme

  • Wednesday 13 March, 6.30-9.00pm
  • Wednesday 20 March, 6.30-9.00pm
  • Wednesday 27 March, 6.30-9.00pm
  • Wednesday 3 April, 6.30-9.00pm
  • Wednesday 10 April, 6.30-9.00pm
  • Saturday 13 April, 9.00am-2.00pm
  • Wednesday 17 April, 6.30-9.00pm

Planning meeting Wednesday 24 April 6.30pm

Planned Moving Day – Friday 26 April, 10.00am

Applications for March close Friday 15 February

May 2019 Training Programme

  • Wednesday 8 May, 6.30-9.00pm
  • Wednesday 15 May, 6.30-9.00pm
  • Wednesday 22 May, 6.30-9.00pm
  • Wednesday 29 May, 6.30-9.00pm
  • Wednesday 5 June, 6.30-9.00pm
  • Saturday 8 June, 9:00am-2.00pm
  • Wednesday 12 June, 6.30pm-9.00pm

Planning meeting Wednesday 19 June, 6.30pm

Planned Moving Day – Friday 21 June, 10.00am

Applications for May close Friday 12 April 

Hamilton

All training sessions are held at Red Cross, 422 Te Rapa Road, Hamilton.

March/April 2019 Training Programme

  • Thursday 21 March, 9.30am-12.00pm or 6.00-9.00pm
  • Thursday 28 March, 9.30am-12.00pm or 6.00-9.00pm
  • Thursday 4 April, 9.30am-12.00pm or 6.00-9.00pm
  • Thursday 11 April, 9.30am-12.00pm or 6.00-9.00pm
  • Thursday 18 April, 9.30am-12.00pm or 6.00-9.00pm

May/June 2019 Training Programme

  • Tuesday 14 May, 9.30am-12.00pm or 6.00-9.00pm
  • Tuesday 21 May, 9.30am-12.00pm or 6.00-9.00pm
  • Tuesday 28 May, 9.30am-12.00pm or 6.00-9.00pm
  • Tuesday 4 June, 9.30am-12.00pm or 6.00-9.00pm
  • Tuesday 11 June, 9.30am-12.00pm or 6.00-9.00pm
July/August 2019 Training Programme
  • Thursday 11 July, 9.30am-12.00pm or 6.00-9.00pm
  • Thursday 18 July, 9.30am-12.00pm or 6.00-9.00pm
  • Thursday 25 July, 9.30am-12.00pm or 6.00-9.00pm
  • Thursday 1 August, 9.30am-12.00pm or 6.00-9.00pm
  • Thursday 8 August, 9.30am-12.00pm or 6.00-9.00pm
September/October 2019 Training Programme

  • Tuesday 3 September, 9.30am-12.00pm or 6.00-9.00pm
  • Tuesday 10 September, 9.30am-12.00pm or 6.00-9.00pm
  • Tuesday 17 September, 9.30am-12.00pm or 6.00-9.00pm
  • Tuesday 24 September, 9.30am-12.00pm or 6.00-9.00pm
  • Tuesday 2 October, 9.30am-12.00pm or 6.00-9.00pm

October/November 2019 Training Programme

  • Thursday 31 October, 9.30am-12.00pm or 6.00-9.00pm
  • Thursday 7 November, 9.30am-12.00pm or 6.00-9.00pm
  • Thursday 14 November, 9.30am-12.00pm or 6.00-9.00pm
  • Thursday 21 November, 9.30am-12.00pm or 6.00-9.00pm
  • Thursday 28 November, 9.30am-12.00pm or 6.00-9.00pm

Manawatu/Whanganui

All training sessions are held at Red Cross First Aid training room, 245 Main Street, Palmerston North.

March/April 2019 Training Programme (1)

  • Tuesday 26 March, 9.30am-12noon
  • Thursday 28 March, 9.30am-12noon
  • Tuesday 2 April, 9.30am-12noon
  • Thursday 4 April, 9.30am-12noon
  • Tuesday 9 April, 9.30am-12noon
  • Thursday 11 April, 9.30am-12noon

Please come to the main reception of the Red Cross service centre.

March/April 2019 Training Programme (2)

  • Thursday 28 March, 6.15-8.30pm
  • Saturday 30 March, 9.30am-3.30pm
  • Saturday 6 April, 9.30am-3.00pm

Out-of-hours access is through the Training Room door to the left of the Red Cross book shop.

Dates are subject to change and will be confirmed 3 weeks prior to the course start date.

Wellington

March/April Training Programme

  • Wednesday 6 March, 6.00-8.30pm
  • Wednesday 13 March, 6.00-8.30pm
  • Wednesday 20 March, 6.00-8.30pm
  • Wednesday 27 March, 6.00-8.30pm
  • Wednesday 3 April, 6.00-8.30pm
  • Saturday 6 April, 10.00am-4.00pm

May/June Training Programme

  • Wednesday 8 May, 6.00-8.30pm
  • Wednesday 15 May, 6.00-8.30pm
  • Wednesday 22 May, 6.00-8.30pm
  • Wednesday 29 May, 6.00-8.30pm
  • Wednesday 5 June, 6.00-8.30pm
  • Saturday 8 June, 10.00am-4.00pm

July/August Training Programme

  • Wednesday 3 July, 6.00-8.30pm
  • Wednesday 10 July, 6.00-8.30pm
  • Wednesday 17 July, 6.00-8.30pm
  • Wednesday 24 July, 6.00-8.30pm
  • Wednesday 31 July, 6.00-8.30pm
  • Saturday 3 August, 10.00am-4.00pm

August/September Training Programme

  • Wednesday 28 August, 6.00-8.30pm
  • Wednesday 4 September, 6.00-8.30pm
  • Wednesday 11 September, 6.00-8.30pm
  • Wednesday 18 September, 6.00-8.30pm
  • Wednesday 25 September, 6.00-8.30pm
  • Saturday 28 September, 10.00am-4.00pm

October/November Training Programme

  • Wednesday 23 October, 6.00-8.30pm
  • Wednesday 30 October, 6.00-8.30pm
  • Wednesday 6 November, 6.00-8.30pm
  • Wednesday 13 November, 6.00-8.30pm
  • Wednesday 20 November, 6.00-8.30pm
  • Saturday 23 November, 10.00am-4.00pm

Nelson

April 2019 Training Programme

  • Saturday 6 April, 9:30am-4:00pm
  • Sunday 7 April, 9:30am-4:00pm
  • Thursday 11 April, 5:30-8:30pm
May 2019 Training Programme
  • Saturday 25 May, 9:30am-4:00pm
  • Sunday 26 May, 9:30am-4:00pm
  • Thursday 30 May, 5:30-8:30pm

July 2019 Training Programme

  • Saturday 20 July, 9:30am-4:00pm
  • Sunday 21 July, 9:30am-4:00pm
  • Thursday 25 July, 5:30-8:30pm

September 2019 Training Programme

  • Saturday 14 September, 9:30am-4:00pm
  • Sunday 15 September, 9:30am-4:00pm
  • Thursday 19 September, 5:30-8:30pm

Christchurch

February 2019 Training Programme

Weekend one

  • Friday 1 February, 5.30-8.00pm
  • Saturday 2 February, 10.00am-2.00pm
  • Sunday 3 February, 10.00am-2.00pm

Weekend two

  • Friday 15 February, 5.30-8.00pm
  • Saturday 15 February, 10.00am-2.00pm
  • Sunday 17 February, 10.00am-2.00pm

A planning meeting will be held on Monday 25 February at 5.30pm.

Dunedin

April 2019 Training Programme

  • Friday 29 March, 5.30-8.00pm
  • Saturday 30 March, 10.00am-5.00pm
  • Tuesday 2 April, 5.30-8.00pm
  • Friday 5 April, 5.30-8.00pm
  • Saturday 6 April, 2.00-3.00pm

A planning meeting is likely to be held on or after Tuesday 23 April.

June 2019 Training Programme

  • Friday 7 June, 5.30-8.00pm
  • Saturday 8 June, 10.00am-5.00pm
  • Tuesday 11 June, 5.30-8.00pm
  • Friday 14 June, 5.30-8.00pm
  • Saturday 15 June, 10.00am-3.00pm

A planning meeting is likely to be held on or after Tuesday 17 June.

Invercargill

April 2019 Training Programme

  1. Tuesday 2 April, 6.00-8.30pm
  2. Saturday 6 April, 9.00am-4.30pm
  3. Tuesday 09 April, 6.00-8.30pm
  4. Saturday 13 April, 9.00am-4.30pm

Planning meeting: Monday 15th April 6.00-8.00pm

May/June 2019 Training Programme

  1. Tuesday 21 May, 6.00-8.30pm
  2. Saturday 25 May, 9.00am-4.30pm
  3. Tuesday 28 May, 6.00-8.30pm
  4. Saturday 8 June, 9.00am-4.30pm

Planning meeting: Monday 17 June, 6.00-8.00pm

Contact details

For more information about volunteering in your region, please contact:

Become a refugee support volunteer

Volunteering is a fun and rewarding experience. Our refugee support volunteers help families start again, while learning about new cultures, meeting new people and changing lives (including their own!).