Carol Orbel has lived in Wanaka for over 25 years. During her working years she was a nurse, owned a hardware store in Dunedin, worked at Mitre 10 in Wanaka and ran a lodge in Dublin Bay.

Retirement hasn’t slowed Carol down, however; she is a keen bridge player, likes her gardening and has been involved as a volunteer in many organisations over the years.

Carol has been a dedicated volunteer at Elmslie House since 1998 where she helps out most Mondays hosting the Boccia ball game, a type of bowls.

“She plays it with such fun and hilarity and possesses a bright and happy disposition ,we’re so lucky to have her volunteer with us and help keep our residents entertained,” says Elmslie House Activities Coordinator Marissa.

Carol has also been an active volunteer with local women’s group The Alpha Club and until 2016, Friends of Elmslie. Through their fundraising efforts, they have put nearly $100,000 back into the local community over the last 25 years. When her children were young she was involved in the Playcentre and kindergarten, Scouts, PTA, wrestling and ski club. She was also heavily involved in organising local house tours and Christmas Galas.

Once a volunteer, always a volunteer. Why does Carol share her time so willingly?

“I enjoy giving back to the community while I’m still able to. I was brought up in a family who volunteered so it’s just been what one does, it’s completely natural and nice to be able to help others. I’ve made a lot of good friendships through volunteering and wholeheartedly encourage others to give it a try!”

Carol Orbel
Elmslie House

Interactive Volunteer Stories Map

This story was shared as part of our interactive map of volunteer stories from across Aotearoa, which we launched during #NVW2019. This map is filled with stories from volunteers throughout Aotearoa, New Zealand. This map celebrates the contribution of volunteers in their communities throughout Aotearoa. It aims to inspire people to engage in volunteering, Mahi Aroha and social action and to realise the benefits of weaving their communities together through their actions.