This week is National Volunteer Week and so only fitting that we thank ALL of our wonderful volunteers alongside our June Volunteer of the Month, Central Districts’ Libby Rayner.

National Volunteer Week 2019 runs from June 16-22. This year’s theme is “Whiria te tangata – weaving the people together”, something that Libby does wonderfully well.

Emma Slaney, who nominated Libby, said: “She is always helping kids and parents in her spare time. She goes above and beyond all the time, even when she’s got tons of other stuff to do.”

Libby’s day job is Director of Equestrian at Nga Tawa School. On top of that she recently organised and was chef d’equipe for the 2019 trans-Tasman Interschools eventing competition in Victoria, Australia on borrowed horses. No mean feat.

Libby is passionate about making riding as accessible and enjoyable for as many people as possible. She says she has a really supportive team behind her and they are always looking at what they can do, improve or create. For example, here’s just some of the things Libby and the team have achieved:

  • Opened their Pony Club branch up to the public (it had only been for students for decades) and as a result have a huge membership now and lots of kids from the Rangitikei joining in
  • Created a riding school on the weekends during term time for community members that don’t have their own pony, to have the opportunity to ride the Nga Tawa ponies, have lessons and enjoy equestrian
  • Run some low level, cheap entry, shows and training days to encourage people to come and have a go at show hunter and show jumping
  • Created a partnership with an Australian school and visit each other for interschool dressage and jumping competitions annually
  • Run a biannual field trip for the whole Nga Tawa Academy (78 girls) to the races to show them the opportunities available to them for a career in the industry
  • Have a “school pony” program for girls at school that want to have the opportunity to ride and compete but don’t or can’t own their own pony. They are able to lease one of the 30 school owned horses or ponies.

Thank you Libby, we admire your work!

And we love the generosity and commitment of all the thousands of other ESNZ volunteers, thank you to every single one of you. We wouldn’t have a sport without you.

Volunteer of the Month receives a gift in recognition of their contribution; Libby’s is on its way to her.

Libby’s nomination came about from ESNZ having a ‘Volunteer of the Month’ nomination box at Horse of the Year and in our Wellington office into which our members have popped their Volunteer of the Month nominations. It doesn’t end there however, you can nominate your Volunteer of the Month by emailing us at [email protected]  with Volunteer of the Month in the subject line. Please provide this information:

Who are you nominating?

From what discipline?

From what area?

Why are you nominating them?

Your name

Your contact phone number