Celebrating National Volunteer Week 2021

National Volunteer Week (NVW) is Australia’s largest annual celebration of volunteers. This year it is being held from Monday 17 - Sunday 23 May, 2021.

Volunteering is fundamental to the life and soul of the Territory, with so many wonderful volunteers contributing positively to our community across a wide range of areas, such as fundraising for a community group; refereeing in local sport; helping at schools and assisting in emergency services, to name just a few.

The theme for NVW 2021 is Recognise. Reconnect. Reimagine. which acknowledges that it is time to:

  • Recognise - celebrate and thank volunteers for the vital role they play in our lives.
  • Reconnect -  to what is important by giving our time to help others and ourselves.
  • Reimagine - how we can better support volunteers and communities they help.

Territory Families, Housing and Communities are proud to let you know about four volunteers making our sporting communities stronger through their generous donation of time, expertise, and effort.

To find out more about volunteering opportunities in the NT, visit the Volunteering NT website.

Nominations have also been extended for the 2021 Northern Territory Regional Sports Volunteer Awards in recognition and support of National Volunteers Week. Be sure to submit your nominations to recognise worthy volunteers by Friday, 21 May 2021.


Kristy Cowley, Nhulunbuy

Kristy Cowley, Swimming volunteer

“Like most parents and/or guardians my reasons for volunteering started with my children and their interests. Volunteering for the local swimming club has provided me with great skills and knowledge and has lead me to become a Development Swim Coach.

Volunteering is really important especially in a small town like Nhulunbuy, without these special people I wouldn’t have made awesome friends and the community wouldn’t be the way it is.”

- Kristy Cowley, Swimming volunteer

Neil Forsyth, Darwin

Neil Forsyth, netball volunteer

"Being a volunteer is very enriching. It’s an opportunity to "pay it forward" and contribute to other people's success."

- Neil Forsyth, Netball volunteer

Jenny Ashenden, Alice Springs

Jenny Ashenden, tennis volunteer

“My volunteering career commenced at a young age learning from my parents. Regularly reflected through their actions was their high value and support of community spirit. For a young girl who lacked confidence and natural sporting ability I quickly learnt that I could be a good and valued volunteer.

Through volunteering my confidence grew. Opportunities flowed from simply being reliable. I consistently tried to do my best and help at every opportunity. Volunteering at a wide range of community-focused services and events at a local, regional and national level (such as the Alice Springs Show, the Alice Springs Masters Games, Parrtjima, presenting at national symposiums and being a sporting official in local competitions) all contributed to my growth.

Volunteers facilitate the growth and development of our local communities, so I sincerely urge everyone to make time to accept the challenges of volunteering as it is also an amazingly enriching experience.”

- Jenny Ashenden, Tennis volunteer

Sharon Freeman, Darwin

Sharon Freeman, netball volunteer

“Volunteering impacted my life from an early age as a Teenager (back in the ‘80s) helping out in the canteen at the footy/netball club.

I have continued to volunteer throughout my life in various ways on different committees both school and sports, coaching, team manager and more.

Volunteering is a rewarding experience as you see benefits to individuals, teams and organisations.

I love seeing the players improve, make lifelong friendships and make memories. I was given the opportunity to do this as a junior and it is my way of giving back.

Volunteering is – rewarding, friendships, memories, sharing, giving back and a pathway for life.”

- Sharon Freeman, Netball volunteer


Last updated: 18 May 2021

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