Volunteering Hawke's Bay has had 28 nominations for its excellence awards, with the winners being announced tomorrow to coincide with National Volunteer Week.

The awards recognise the huge contribution many individuals make volunteering across multiple community sectors.

Volunteering Hawke's Bay community liaison co-ordinator Jenny Elliott said nominations were invited for four categories - individual (15 nominations), team (11), youth (two) and governance (one).

Organisations that had nominated their volunteers ranged from social services to sport, cultural events and environmental initiatives.


"We're delighted with the very broad range of community services represented who have taken the opportunity to thank their volunteers and highlight the dedication and generosity of many individuals who give their time and skills to volunteering," Ms Elliott said.

The local awards were first held in 2012 and had been growing ever since, she said.

As well as recognising volunteers' efforts they were a way to advocate for volunteering and highlight the vital role volunteers played in delivering community organisation services.

"I think we often don't realise how much our communities depend on volunteers and also how much volunteering benefits individuals."

As to whether there were enough volunteers to fill the need, she said community organisations were very dependent on volunteers to deliver their services, for which there was increasing demand.

She said it was hard to determine whether there were enough volunteers because organisations expanded their services depending on the volunteers that were available, so there was always a demand for more.

Benefits of becoming a volunteer included gaining new work skills and making contacts, Ms Elliott said.

"For others, for example retired people, it can be a way of having contact out in the community and also giving back.

"We often have new migrants volunteering because it's a way of becoming involved in our communities, learning about New Zealand's lifestyle, making contact with others and getting local work experience."

Volunteering Hawke's Bay currently had about 160 volunteer jobs listed on its website (volunteeringhb.org.nz) and more than 84 organisations listed as members.

In the 11 months to date this financial year (to the end of May) 321 people had registered as volunteers.

The awards have been judged by the Volunteering Hawke's Bay board, and the winners will be announced at 7pm at the Cheval Room, Hawke's Bay Racing Centre, Hastings, tomorrow.