Team at Volunteering NZ



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A New Zealand that promotes, values and supports effective volunteering for the benefit of individuals and communities.
To promote, support and advocate for volunteering.

To contact any of our team, please email, or use our contact us form.

Governance: Board members

Helga Wientjens

Helga Wientjes


Helga is the Capacity and Development Manager at the Cancer Society of New Zealand. Helga has 10 years of experience of establishing supportive environments for volunteering in the not-for-profit and government sectors and is also on the advisory committee of her local timebank.

Tania Jones

Tania Jones

Vice Chairperson

Tania is the CEO of a Christian medical charity, and business owner with a distinctive bias for community development. She has governance and volunteer experience in variety of organisations from Chamber of Commerce, School BoT, church vestry and Volunteer Centres.

Cathy Aiavao

Cathy Aiavao

Board Member – Pacific Peoples

Cathy works for the youth development organisation Youthline. Before returning to New Zealand 10 years ago, she spent 20+ years in Fiji and Samoa, as a volunteer and in airline services.

Wendy Rapana

Wendy Rapana

Board Member – Māori

Wendy is Ngāti Toa Rangatira through her grandfather Dodie WiNeera and Ngāti Ruanui, Ngā Ruahine through her grandmother Huingangutu Robinson. She has been involved with the Association of Administrative Professionals for nearly 8 years as Chair, and was the National President for two years.


Brayden Smith


Brayden is an Audit Partner at Grant Thornton New Zealand. Brayden is a regular commentator on issues that impact the not-for-profit sector and has over 20 years experience working with the sector.


Corrine Coombe

Board Member

Corrine works as an administrator by day, but her real passion is volunteering. From sausage sizzles and car washes, to organising community education classes and fundraising fashion shows she gets involved in it all.


James Lord

Board Member

James is a Business Development Consultant with Careerforce, the ITO for the health and social service sectors. James enjoys creating innovative solutions to workforce needs and has background in both the government and education sectors.


Gail Marshall

Board Member

Gail is a freelance communications professional with around 20 years experience across the not-for-profit, corporate and public sectors. She is also a trustee and matchmaker-in-chief of the Community Comms Collective, a 100% volunteer-run organisation which she co-founded in 2013.

Operations: Staff and Volunteers

Scott Miller Oct 2017 (1)

Scott Miller 

Chief Executive

Scott leads the strategic and operational delivery of VNZ’s outputs and outcomes. His extensive cross-sector experience in public, private and NGO roles ensures the organisation’s people, purpose and priorities are both sustainable and sector-leading.

Scott is active internationally, working as a consultant on democracy, and as a speaker. Scott sits on two national Boards, and volunteers in the disability and older-people sectors.

Michelle Kitney

Michelle Kitney

General Manager

Michelle has a background in local and national volunteering and experience in communications, marketing, and delivering projects. Michelle’s current projects include VNZ’s delivery of a National qualification for volunteer managers and development of its stakeholder engagement strategy. She studied law and English literature at Victoria University of Wellington.


Laura Allen  

Content and UX Manager

Laura has experience planning, developing, and writing interactive content for government and trade industry clients. She worked on government websites for almost ten years. Laura has worked on volunteer week campaigns, web page redesigns and project managing web and written reports for VNZ, and loves getting behind what makes people tick.


Taylor Hamling 


Taylor is the web developer for VNZ working part-time on the VNZ website, Student Volunteer Week, National Volunteer Week, the annual VNZ conference and many more projects. Taylor is a professional freelancer with a degree in Computer Science. Taylor’s portfolio


Nick Havell

Assistant Accountant

Nick is our volunteer Assistant Accountant. He completed his Bachelor of Applied Management majoring in accounting in 2016. Nick is also studying the CPA Australia program and is aspiring to be a Financial Accountant.

Ross Patel Headshot

Ross Patel

Governance Advisor

Ross is currently completing his Masters in Experience and Service Design specialising in youth engagement with Non-profit organisations. When Ross is not thinking of ways Volunteer-Centre organisations can engage more people in volunteering in their communities, he is volunteering his skills in community projects such as the Youth Aotea-Reo Project – developing an app for New Zealand youth which aims to provide youth support services in a more convenient way. Ross is also the President of the Multicultural New Zealand Youth Council.


Mandeep Singh

WordPress Editor

Mandeep is providing WordPress support to Volunteering New Zealand’s website. Specializing in web technologies, Mandeep has a degree in Information Technology and experience as a customer support representative.

Ione Slater

Ione Slater 

Communications Advisor

Ione is currently completing her Master of Communication, focusing on Marketing and Public Relations, at Massey University.  With a keen interest in using digital and social media marketing to cultivate community, Ione aims to continue working with non-profit organisations in order to amplify awareness and engagement.

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