CEO Matthew Cooper believes that sport and recreation needs to become better when working with volunteers and are committed to “A plan to celebrate, support and increase the number of sport and recreation volunteers across the Waikato region”.
 
WILSS in conjunction with KiwiSport funding run a very successful Secondary School Student Leaders program. 
 
This is headed by Nicola Blake from WILSS who now has 500 students in the programme volunteering across a wide range of activities. The students are required to complete 30 hours of community service to obtain their KiwiSport Leaders Award. 
 
A great example is four students contributing 800 hours of volunteering in the community. Ella Higgins from Cambridge High School has amassed more than 300 hours in past two years. In winter she is busy umpiring netball at secondary school and club level and has aspirations to progress to become a national umpire. In the summer she is a lifeguard at Waihi Beach.
 
Matthew McHugh, also from Cambridge High, has accumulated 170 hours as a rugby referee and is currently on the NZ Rugby Referees programme.
 
From St John's College Jaxson Fisher and Brayden Were are hitting the 150 hours mark each refereeing basketball and also coaching. Fellow student Corban Hall has advanced quickly as a Water Polo referee acquiring 70 hours experience and attaining National Level 2 status.
 
Throughout the Waikato there are 73,500 volunteers in sport delivering 4.3 million hours of work and contributing $65.1 million to regional GDP.
 
These students are certainly contributing their share and setting a great example to other youth for the future.
 
A new look Sport Waikato Volunteer web page will be launched in September with resources that will help organisations Plan – Grow - Support and Celebrate Volunteers. 

Sport Waikato new focus on volunteer awareness

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