A spot on the Rotorua Energy Charitable Trust will be opening up as Alison Perrin, who has served for 15 years, prepares to retire.

For "the face" of the trust, Perrin's retirement will be about travel and spending time with family.

When she first started with the Rotorua Energy Charitable Trust 15 years ago, it was with the goal of making a meaningful contribution to the Rotorua community.

Since then she has helped thousands of Rotorua organisations and residents across the city, through her role as the trust's grants assessor; while earning a reputation as "the face" of the trust.


Now, as Perrin prepares for retirement, and the trust prepares to say farewell to one of its most valued assets, an opportunity has arisen for someone to continue the work.

Perrin reflects with satisfaction on her time at the trust and the position, which has enabled her to get out into the community and connect with "some amazing people".

She joined the trust after more than 12 years at the Citizens' Advice Bureau, a background she said helped immensely in the grants assessor role.

"I know how scary and frustrating the application process can be, so we've tried to make it as accessible as possible for applicants."

She saw the role as an opportunity to better understand how everyone worked together to make Rotorua such a great community.

"Roles like this don't come up often in Rotorua and it is hard to believe that it has been 15 years."

Perrin said the most rewarding aspect of her role was the people.

"Being a broadly targeted funding service, we tend to get a lot of groups coming back, so I have built some very special relationships.

"The benefits to Rotorua have been immense. A lot of other cities are envious of our Rotorua Trust and its role in the community."

Perrin said she was going to miss the contact and satisfaction from helping the community, as well as working with co-funders.

But she is looking forward to a different lifestyle - spending more time with family and friends, and has a bucket-list of places to travel.

With all of her experience in the Rotorua community, Perrin has one final message; to enjoy and value all the amazing work that goes on in the community, often unheralded.

"It's about value and respect. Every little contribution makes a difference and most people are so passionate about what they are doing. It's hard not to be humbled by the sacrifices people are making to help others."

She said the past 15 years had been an "incredible opportunity".

Trust chairman Stewart Edward said Perrin had made a significant contribution to the Rotorua community, helping groups through the funding process.

"Alison is a very special person who has a close understanding of the Rotorua community and a genuine desire to help make good things happen.

"The trust and our community have benefited tremendously from her involvement and willingness to go the extra mile these past 15 years. We wish her all the very best for her impending retirement."