Devoted Volunteers

27 September 2023. Not all of us may realise just how blessed our community as we have many passionate local people who dedicate hours of time and energy to ensuring we all enjoy a safe and beautiful place to live in. Organised within community groups their devotion helps to positively shape how we experience living where we do.

For example, one of these groups are the resident and ratepayer groups. Across the Rodney ward there are over fifty of these, each with a democratically elected committee structure and voluntary memberships. They aspire to actively improve local well-being as well as acting as diligent watch dogs over Council related issues.

Many of us are busy with our day to day lives but it is good to be reminded of the work others do which benefits us all.

Frequently there are times when these groups need to interact with Auckland Council and Auckland Transport. They have found and established working relationships with Council staff and steadily work towards achieving the outcomes their local community want.  We are fortuitous to have such people in our neighbourhoods.

They also do an excellent job in holding myself and the elected Local Board members to account. I find this important and deeply respect this additional level of answerability. Helping these groups to get things done is essential. Remaining accountable to the community who elected you is important.

It is not always smooth sailing and there are times when these groups run into road blocks and cannot penetrate Auckland Council to find the right person or information they need. This is when myself and the Local Board can often help by using our elected position to find the right person and connect people together.

This is a large and rewarding part of being your elected representative. I am regularly contacted by constituents who have become so frustrated dealing with the Council they need help. My monthly clinics, where members of the public can sit down with me face to face with their issues, remain extremely popular. These are held in Warkworth, Kumeu and Wellsford and of course I can easily be contacted directly at any time.

Part of proactively supporting our resident and ratepayer groups was organising the opportunity for them to meet the Mayor of Auckland earlier this year. This established a direct relationship with the Mayor and these relationships have continued to be fostered, which the Mayor deeply values.   

There are many other social, environmental and charitable groups within our community all quietly working hard to help provide us with the safe and enjoyable society we have. We are indeed fortunate to have such good people as neighbours and it is something to appreciate and to thank them.