Volunteering – Pippa Jerard



Pippa is sixteen years old and has been volunteering for the YMCA for the past year.

Pippa attends Papanui High School and has found at the YMCA a different group of friends and a different set of doors and opportunities. Even though at school she has a busy life – is involved in peer support, the student council and a range of leadership roles – the YMCA has provided a bunch of other options which she previously didn’t know existed. For example, she has discovered that she loves kids! She has enjoyed learning about running programmes for children. The many different children from all walks of life that come to the YMCA has been an education and has inspired Pippa to consider a career working with children.

She is grateful to live in NZ – having spent some time overseas, and particularly when compared to Japan – she thinks she is so lucky to live here, so green and beautiful. When asked which of the ‘flags’ she prefers the fact that she is too young to have a say and it has rather disengaged her from the issue. However, she did comment: “There is no green in any of them? And NZ is so green! That was weird. I didn’t understand that.”

The big issues: Pippa is concerned about “all the usual stuff… global warming, having enough money to buy a house, and is life going to get harder or will it be okay? Like it was for my Mum? I mean, the world is so hectic but sometimes it feels like it is going to custard, with terrorism worries, and the financial depression amd also, technology! There is too much! People are getting so lazy and too immersed in it, it’s like they are less heartfelt because everything is so instant and thoughtless… you know?”

Pippa is looking forward to working at YMCA Wainui Park camp in January, and her ultimate ‘career’ option in the future is anything involving leadership and management. “It would be great if I could be the CEO of the YMCA! But more realistically, I would like to be the Youth Development Manager, or the Holiday Programme Manager one day. What an awesome job those guys have! It would be the ultimate, do a job that you love, get paid to do something really fun and worthwhile…”

For more information about volunteering at the YMCA call Cassandra Troman on 3660689.


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