Who we are
We are super excited to be starting the Victoria branch of the Student Volunteer Army in 21.
Our inaugural executive is made up of a group of ten Victoria University of Wellington students who come from all over New Zealand with a wide range of passions and life experiences. Our ethos centres around providing meaningful volunteer experiences to our members that have a sustainable and long-lasting impact.
We believe that everyone can benefit from volunteering and our events will reflect that in their accessibility.
Alongside the Student Volunteer Army Foundation, we endeavour to always honour Te Tiriti o Waitangi in our practices and events.
Being aligned with the Student Volunteer Army Foundation we consider the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals when selecting the projects we are going to carry out.
The most prominent issues youth believe to be facing the Wellington region are reflected in the following six SDGs, which we will focus on throughout 2021:
Around one in seven households in New Zealand are deemed to be living in poverty. This national crisis affects the day-to-day lives of many in Wellington and our student members are passionate about carrying out projects that can help break the cycle of poverty.
Many students notice during their time at University that homelessness and hunger are prevalent issues in Wellington. We are hoping to partner with organisations who work to combat this issue, so that students can see the tangible impact their volunteering has on the wider community.
Inequality is at the heart of many of the issues our region, and the wider world, faces. We recognise this fact by choosing to focus on reducing inequalities in all our work. We will work toward this goal by both partnering with organisations specifically focussed on this issue and also by incorporating a belief in equality as a right into our club culture. The Vic SVA wants to run events that are accessible to all students – regardless of their ethnicity, gender, religion, or socio-economic status.
As a busy city, Wellington produces a disproportionate amount of greenhouse gas emissions and waste. It is important to the Vic SVA executive to educate our members on the impact that their actions may have and help organisations who are working to decrease our city’s waste.
Many students identify climate change as the biggest issue facing our generation. We want to partner with organisations to allow Vic students to tangibly contribute to actions that can help save our planet.
At the heart of all our volunteering work will be the people and organisations that help us get there. Everyone from our dedicated partners to the community groups whose projects we help with are essential in helping to inspire the next generation of Kiwi leaders to be engaged, lifelong volunteers. We also want to work hard to honour Te Tiriti o Waitangi in everything we do, and as such our partnerships with iwi are integral to our philosophy.
Our 2021 plan
The Victoria Student Volunteer Army is in its first year in 2021 and we are super excited to bring the work of the SVA foundation to the Wellington region.
We are planning two large scale volunteer events for the university year – one in each of the first two trimesters.
These events will be designed to accommodate over 100 student volunteers and will have an environmental focus.
Other, smaller-scale, platoon events will be held once a month in addition to these.. These smaller events will work on a range of projects with different community organizations and will give volunteers the opportunity to help tackle the issues they feel most passionate about.