Volunteer Story – Jasmine


Jasmine attends Victory Playcentre in Nelson with her son Case who is nearly 4 years old.  She also attended Playcentre with her daughter Chloe who is now 11 years old.  She started Playcentre when her daughter had just turned one year old. 

 “When I had my daughter we needed to get out of the house.  We visited Victory Playcentre and never left.   When I had my second child I knew that Playcentre was going to be where we would go.”

 According to Jasmine the families at Playcentre are from all different walks of life, but they support each other through their parenting journey as they face the same parenting challenges.

 “Playcentre is my support place.  It is where other people are going through what I’m going through.  We are all from different walks of life. But we are all going through the same issues and facing the same parenting challenges.  There are families from all different cultural backgrounds and we all just get along so easily.  You make lifelong friendships.” 

 Playcentre has given Jasmine’s son Case a feeling of belonging and he has formed some close relationships with the other children.  

 “Playcentre is where my son feels like he belongs.  Everyone knows Case.  We go every day.  He’s the face of Playcentre for those other kids.  They walk in and see Case doing something.  And they’re like, “we’re going to give it a go because Case is doing it.”  Being the almost four-year-old, the younger kids look up to him.”

 Playcentre creates a sense of community with all the families coming together for important celebrations throughout the year, as well as providing practical support for each other on a day-to-day basis. 

 “We pretty much celebrate all the public holidays together.  We all come together for Easter egg hunts, a Christmas party every year, our Matariki celebration where we have the fire pit and marshmallows.”

 “One of the best things though is that if you’re having a hard day, we have this group messenger.  All you need to do is let someone know and there is always someone who is willing to help or there’s always someone around who is there for you. We are all there for each other.”

 Jasmine is a member of the property team and helps with various “fix-up jobs.” She says volunteering as a Playcentre parent has given her a sense of belonging. 

 “As a Mum at home, it gives me a sense of belonging and purpose, now that I’m not working anymore.”

 When asked if she would recommend Playcentre to others, Jasmine thinks “everyone should do it.” 

 “The first five years of your child’s life goes so fast and Playcentre is the one place where you will embrace every moment of it and get to learn with them.”

 “It will change your life and your relationship with your child.  Just playing and learning together in a place that is just for you guys is incredibly special.”