With her kids grown up, Deidre Anderson went looking for an opportunity to support the people in her community.
“With my kids out of the house, I was keen to get stuck into something I had always been passionate about, which is helping others. I have always been someone that likes to keep busy, so I needed something to keep up the momentum,” she says.
Deidre investigated several organisations before deciding to apply as a volunteer for Victim Support in the North Shore area.
She says, “I had an interview in December and didn’t hear back, which is naturally quite daunting you’re always second guessing yourself. About a month later I sent them an email and got a response back. Such a relief because I had set my mind on it.”
Deidre was thrilled to be accepted and dived headfirst into getting up to speed.
"I have met some incredible mentors and people along the way who are the reason I’m still here four years later.”
“The training was eye-opening for me and I learnt so much, particularly about ways different cultures and people deal with traumatic situations and how to adapt my support style accordingly. I had also never been fortunate enough to go to a Marae which was such a fantastic experience,” she says.
Deidre has now been on the roster for four years and has completed homicide, domestic violence and sexual violence training. She attends a wide variety of incidents providing ongoing support to victims in person and on the phone.
She says, “One day I was assigned a domestic abuse victim who as you can imagine was not in a good place, she had no support from family or friends, and I was the first one to reach out. We spoke everyday until she felt comfortable to report what was going on to the police, and finally, she built up the courage to do so. I later received an email from her saying that without me, she would most likely be dead. It’s cases like those that keep me doing what I’m doing and know that I’m making a positive impact on people’s lives.”
Deidre says volunteering for Victim Support was a great choice for her.
“I haven’t looked back. I am dealing with some extremely difficult situations day in and day out, but I have met some incredible mentors and people along the way who are the reason I’m still here four years later,” she says.
Rodger Barlow, a dedicated Victim Support volunteer, witnesses remarkable changes in his work, providing crucial support and making a positive impact.
Jenny Tosswill, a resilient Victim Support volunteer in the Wairarapa, draws on her paramedic experience to support traumatic cases at Victim Support.
Jo's inspiring journey as a Victim Support volunteer in the Wairarapa, from overcoming personal tragedy and finding solace in helping others.
Former psychiatric nurse Tricia brings valuable experience to her volunteering at Victim Support, making a difference in the community.
Victim Support were there for Billy Davis when his wife unexpectedly passed away and now he’s determined to be there for others as a volunteer.
Hong Kong migrant Yau volunteers at Victim Support, providing crucial support for Chinese-speaking victims.
A dedicated volunteer, trained in homicide support, Maria has supported many victims in her community including the mosque attack victims.
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Daniel's experience as a Victim Support volunteer making a difference in people's lives has given him a new perspective on life.
Discover how Fred, a retired nurse, is using his empathetic nature and skills to help victims of crime and trauma in his community.
Chantal, a primary school teacher, found her love of helping others when she became a volunteer for Victim Support.
Meet Wendy, a volunteer who is on a mission to strengthen people's mana and give back to her community.
University professor and weightlifting silver medallist Jennifer is a busy woman, but she still finds time to volunteer for Victim Support.
A 15-year veteran with Victim Support, volunteer Wayne has always been passionate about solving problems and connecting with others.
Diana, assault survivor turned advocate, finds purpose in aiding others with similar experiences, turning trauma into empowerment.
Victim Support volunteer Christine Cowell says that her role involves being constantly outside her comfort zone.
On top of her busy schedule, Sheila volunteers one 12-hour night shift each week for Victim Support in the Wellington region.
Gurpreet Singh, a doctor from India, became a volunteer to help others, follow his spiritual journey and be a positive role model.
Rikihana (Riki) found Victim Support when he went looking for something to offset his high-pressure position and give back to his community.
With her kids grown up, Deidre Anderson went looking for an opportunity to support the people in her community -then she found Victim Support.
Jim's exceptional commitment to his community was recently recognised with the Queen’s Birthday Honours and Service Medal for Victim Support work.