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Volunteers are crucial to the work of Manaaki Tāngata | Victim Support. With their help we can support thousands of people across Aotearoa New Zealand who are affected by crime, suicide and traumatic events every year. Volunteers come from all walks of life, just like those who need our support.

Volunteering with Manaaki Tāngata | Victim Support can be challenging, but also very rewarding. You will gain valuable skills and make new connections as you support people at their most vulnerable to feel informed, empowered and safe.

You can find out more about the support we offer on our How we can help page.

What volunteers do

As a volunteer you will work alongside our staff teams to support individuals who have been affected by crime, suicide and traumatic events.

Volunteers make an incredible difference by providing much needed information and support to people through times of crisis, helping them to recover, make decisions about their future and move forward.

You will be providing emotional and practical support over the telephone or face to face, which might include:

Listening to someone dealing with the shock of a crime or traumatic event

Assisting a bereaved family with the coronial or funeral process

Supporting someone or a family through a trial

Checking if they are eligible to receive any financial assistance

Referring them on to other support services

To find out more about the role of a Manaaki Tāngata | Victim Support volunteer, download a copy of the role description below.

Role description

Victim Support volunteers provide emotional support, practical assistance, information, referrals, and criminal justice system support to those who have been affected by crime, suicide, and traumatic events.


What to expect

We know volunteers are busy people, so we’ll agree time commitments with you individually, but we ask that you commit to:

  • an initial training programme over two weekends
  • being available at least 6 hours a week, which will include 4 hours on call and 1-2 hours to follow up with victims you are already supporting
  • regular ongoing training with your local team, usually in the evening
  • volunteering with us for at least 12 months, although you're not obliged to

You’ll also be asked to sign a Volunteer Agreement, which outlines how we will support you while you volunteer with us, and what we expect from you.

While you are with Manaaki Tāngata | Victim Support, you’ll receive all the training you need to increase your knowledge and expertise.

You’ll also be supported by a Team Leader who will be your go-to person for any questions or concerns. They’ll make sure you have all you need so you can provide the best support to victims of crime, suicide and traumatic events.

On occasions you may be asked to provide support in another part of the country. This may be in response to a crisis or because demand for Manaaki Tāngata | Victim Support’s services is higher in another area. If you don’t want to be engaged with this, we will respect your right to say ‘no’.

About you

Manaaki Tāngata | Victim Support volunteers come from all walks of life, just like those who need our help – you could be a student, a mid-career professional looking for a new direction, or retired. You might already know a bit about the justice system or be curious to learn more.

Maybe you’ve been affected by crime, suicide or a traumatic event and received helpful support, or maybe you didn’t, but either way you understand how important the right support at the right time is for those who are hurting.

We’re looking for people from all backgrounds who represent the communities and diversity of Aotearoa New Zealand.

We need people who are:


  • at least 18 years old and able to pass a police check
  • New Zealand resident or citizen


  • patient and a good listener
  • non-judgemental and can accept people as they are
  • able to build rapport with people who may have complex and varying needs, and resilient enough to help others under pressure


  • committed to Te Tiriti o Waitangi and supporting people from all cultures and backgrounds
  • committed to providing a compassionate and informative service that empowers others to make their own choices


  • able to demonstrate appropriate levels of discretion and confidentiality and maintain clear boundaries
  • confident using computer and phone applications, including email, online training, databases, and online information and resources.

Personal transport
If you want to get involved with visits and face-to-face support, you’ll also need to have your own transport (you will be reimbursed for any travel you do on behalf of Manaaki Tāngata | Victim Support), but if you don’t, no worries – a lot of our support is provided by phone and online so you can get involved from the comfort of your own home.

Head shot of Mary, Head of Volunteering

I’m hoping we can provide a real feeling that they’re part of something, as well as it being a fantastic way to gain in skills, learn about the justice system, and self-develop. You learn an awful lot about yourself through volunteering.”

Mary, Head of Volunteering

Our approach to volunteering

Manaaki Tāngata | Victim Support is committed to creating an environment where volunteers feel welcomed, supported, valued, and empowered, by focusing on our values of:


Respect, generosity, and care for others


Connections and relationships


Empowerment and self-determination


Unity and collective action


Guardianship and responsibility

Where barriers are identified, we work hard to remove them so that volunteering with us is accessible to everyone.

We do this by:

Being flexible and creating a range of volunteering opportunities that enable people with different skills, commitments, availability, and motivations to get involved

Valuing all contributions, regardless of how much volunteers do or how long they stay with us

Making sure volunteers are equipped to do what we ask of them through training and support

Giving our staff the time, training, and tools they need to support, manage and communicate effectively with volunteers

We recognise the value of volunteers

Engaging volunteers in the work of Manaaki Tāngata | Victim Support means that more victims of crime, suicide and traumatic events can be provided with the support they need to feel informed, empowered, safe and able to cope.

The skills and experience volunteers bring with them, which might include their own experience of crime and trauma, enhances the service that we can provide.

We acknowledge that without the support of volunteers, we would not be able to provide our service.

People directly affected by a crime or incident

Members of their family or whānau

Witnesses of an incident or the first person on the scene

Support people helping a friend or family or whānau member through the justice process

Our commitments to you


We will communicate regularly and clearly with you, keeping you up to date with volunteering activities and what’s happening at Manaaki Tāngata | Victim Support.


We will make sure you have a manager who you can contact about any questions or concerns that you might have.


We will respond to your questions and concerns in a timely way.


We will address any issues or concerns with fairness and impartiality.


We will embrace differences and act in an inclusive and non-discriminatory manner.

Training and equipment

We will provide you with all the training, equipment and support you need for your volunteering role.


We will reimburse any agreed expenses that you incur while you volunteer with us.

Frequently asked questions

The application process

Want to become a volunteer with us? Fill out our online volunteer enquiry form below.

What will happen after you submit the form?

001. Follow up

After submitting the enquiry form below, you'll receive an email with a bit more information. You'll also receive the link to our more detailed Application form. When you're ready, take a few minutes to complete the form.

Once submitted, someone will be in touch with you over the next few days to answer any questions you might have and explain a little bit more about what’s involved.

002. Interview

You’ll be invited to attend an interview to check you have the right skills and attributes to become a volunteer. If successful, we’ll ask for your permission to complete a police check and follow up with your references.

003. Training Programme

Once that has all been completed, you’ll be invited to the Initial Training Programme (ITP) that all volunteers need to attend, regardless of previous experience, and sign the Volunteer Agreement.

Then, you'll be part of the team, and ready to help us help more people!

Volunteer enquiry form

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  • Criteria for becoming a registered counsellor with Victim Support:

    Hold a current certificate of membership to a recognised professional body such as NZAC/NZPA/ANZASW/DAAPANZ.

    If you are not a member of a recognised professional body but have the required qualifications, skills and experience your application maybe considered on a case by case basis.

    • Relevant tertiary qualification or qualifications as set by the applicant’s professional body

    • Other relevant qualifications in areas such as social work with counselling components; child play; music therapy or traditional Maori or Pasifika therapies etc. will be considered on a case-by-case basis.

    • A completed referee form from the applicant's current or recent clinical supervisor.

    • A ‘No Results’ police vetting report.

  • Consulting Address

  • Documentation you need to include with this application:

  • Photo ID

  • You must also provide evidence of your identity:

    • your New Zealand driver licence, or
    • your current New Zealand passport.

  • Terms and conditions

  • I agree that in submitting this application:

    • I have provided all the material asked for and that Victim Support may check my
    memberships with the relevant organisations annually or as required.

    • Victim Support may contact my referee to discuss my application and my suitability for the work I have sought approval for.

    • I understand that my details will be held on file by Victim Support and may be provided to the Ministry of Justice as part of compliance reporting.

  • If approved as a Victim Support counsellor:

    • I will send a copy of my new practicing certificate each year to VAS Administrator, NZ Council of Victim Support, PO Box 3017, Wellington 6140, fax 04 495 3076 or

    • I will only charge Victim Support the agreed fee and will not make any additional charges to the client, unless there is agreement between all parties prior to commencing counselling.

    • I will not exceed the approved number of sessions available to clients referred to me. (If you believe more sessions are required this will be considered on a case by case basis, dependent on the funding criteria and the circumstances of the client. A request for more sessions should be sent to the VAS Administrator at

    • I understand I will not be paid for any sessions that are not approved by Victim Support.

    • I will be willing to liaise with Victim Support employees on matters related to the
    administration of the Victim Financial Assistance Scheme.

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