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Colleen's Story

The beginning of 2023 marked Colleen’s 25th anniversary of service with North Shore Group – a journey that has taken her through starting at Woolly Bear Farm in Albany in early 1998 and on to our current premises in Stillwater when the Group relocated in 2000.

As with many major experiences in life, it started with a coincidental meeting at a Christmas Street BBQ and a conversation with a neighbour who was already a volunteer at North Shore RDA. Colleen freely admits to having no experience with horses at that time (apart from falling off one!) and certainly no knowledge of children with special needs or a disability.

My, how things have changed!

Starting as a Side Walker and then Leader, Colleen has since handled every possible volunteer job a Group has to offer.

She has been a Day Leader for many years, has served on the Committee and our associated Charitable Trust Board for lengthy periods. Even now, in her 80’s, she continues to be at the Group each week, managing our Day Boards and her good humour and energy are truly infectious.

Not only was her achievement recognised by North Shore RDA, she was also Runner-up in the National Volunteer of the Year, awarded at the recent New Zealand RDA National Conference.

In her own words:

“I am so very glad I became a NSRDA volunteer. My 25 years have been very rewarding in all aspects.

I have met so many wonderful people, and value the friendships of many. The additional experience and fellowship I have gained is invaluable. It truly has been a wonderful journey.”

Colleen Masters

Volunteer since 1998

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