Queen recognises NZ volunteer

Published: Tue 6 Mar 2018 04:43 PM
Her Majesty The Queen recognises New Zealand volunteer with Commonwealth Points of Light award
Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II has today, March 6th 2018, recognised Diane Vivian, of New Zealand as the 23rd Commonwealth Point of Light in honour of her exceptional voluntary work establishing and running ‘Grandparents Raising Grandchildren Trust’.
In the lead-up to the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting in London on 19-20 April, Her Majesty The Queen - as Head of the Commonwealth - is thanking inspirational volunteers across the 52 Commonwealth nations for the difference they are making in their communities and beyond.
By sharing these stories of service, the Heads of Government meeting will celebrate inspirational acts of volunteering across the Commonwealth and help inspire others to make their own contribution to tackling some of the greatest social challenges of our time.
Diane founded the first support group for full-time grandparent caregivers in Auckland in 1999, and in 2001 established the ‘Grandparents Raising Grandchildren Trust’. The Trust has supported over 6,000 full-time grandparent and extended family caregivers across New Zealand by providing access to helplines, caregiver training, and as a liaison with other community organisations.
Each Commonwealth Point of Light will receive a personalised certificate signed by Her Majesty The Queen as Head of the Commonwealth. This was presented to her in the British Consulate in Auckland by Deputy High Commissioner Helen Smith.
Diane Vivian said:
“I am deeply, deeply humbled. This journey has never been about me at all, it always has and still is about what one can do for so many thousands who do not know where to turn with precious mokopuna and tamariki. To shine a light in unsheltered waters and move them into a calm harbour, has been my joy.”
Helen Smith, Deputy High Commissioner to New Zealand said:
“I was delighted to present Diane with her Point of Light award. She is a truly inspiring individual, and her work with Grandparents Raising Grandchildren is making a real difference to the lives of many people around New Zealand.”
The Commonwealth is a diverse community of 52 nations that work together to promote prosperity, democracy and peace. The Heads of Government meeting will bring together leaders from all the 52 Member countries to reaffirm common values, address shared global challenges and agree how to work to create a better future for all citizens, especially young people. Voluntary service is a vital part of this agenda, which is why Her Majesty The Queen has chosen to recognise outstanding volunteers across the Commonwealth in this special way.

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