Team of volunteers works for community’s families in need

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Gore Women’s Refuge has a team of volunteers and board members working for families in need. Board chairwoman Philippa Winter has been a member of the board since June 2015. She became chairwoman at the end of 2015. ‘‘It’s areally good role,’’ Mrs Winter said. Mrs Winter has experience workingin the family violence field and has worked with victims in different roles. She worked at Jigsaw for five years, where she identified what was required in thecommunity around education and projects to bring public awareness about family violence. She likedher role atJigsaw and decided to return to volunteering and was asked to come on board at the refuge. ‘‘It’s apassion,’’ she said. ‘‘It’s just giving something back to the community and wanting to see the agency grow for the community.’’ She said everyone had something different they brought to the board. Angela Carse is in her second year as a volunteer at the Gore Women’s Refuge. Miss Carse works on the crisis line, and helps around the office. ‘‘I knew they were looking for volunteers, and I had spare time and wanted to do something worthwhile for the community,’’ Miss Carse said. ‘‘They’re an amazing group of people who fill a need.’’ She said it was sad that there was such a need for the refuge. ‘‘It’s opened my eyes.’’ Miss Carse said people could give as little or as much time as they wanted. Martin Cupit has been a member of the Gore Women’s Refuge board since November last year. He was approached by a board member. ‘‘The board’s job is a governance role. We don’t get involved in the day-to-day tasks of the refuge,’’ Mr Cupit said. Members worked with the manager Hannah Bain and looked at the plan and direction the refuge wanted to go, he said. Mr Cupit is also a senior constable at Mataura police station. ‘‘Being a police officer, we’re at the coalface of domestic violence,’’ he said. ‘‘It’s good for me to see how the refuge gets involved. ‘‘It’s good to give back to the community and help out anyway you can.’’