Carol Patterson had a list of things-to-do once she retired.

And for the SPCA, Riding for the Disabled (RDA) and the Department of Conservation (DoC), it's a good thing she did.

A former teacher who retired in 2015, Patterson has given time to the organisations she said satisfy her love of animals, children and the environment.

"I knew when I retired, I did not want to be sitting around watching television. Volunteering keeps my days filled.

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"And because my husband and I travel a lot, we can't really have pets as it would be unfair to them. I get my

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