Kelburn woman nominated for local hero of the year award.

Kelburn woman nominated for local hero of the year award.

Narges Hamidi at the Vinnies op shop in Kelburn. Photo: Besa Chembo.

Kelburn St Vincent de Paul store manager Narges Hamidi, was nominated for a the Kiwibank New Zealand Local Hero of the Year Award for her charity work.

She received news of her nomination on February 27 but she is yet to confirm who nominated her for the prestigious award.

The award aims to celebrate and give thanks to Kiwis providing a positive contribution to their region, town, suburb or community. Kiwis were invited to nominate people in their community for a number of reasons but most importantly; individuals displaying values that aim to make New Zealand a better place.

Hamidi has been involved in the community since her arrival in 2016. Tasked with the duty of managing a then newly opened St Vincent de Paul in Kelburn, she felt a sense of pride and purpose to fulfil her passion of helping others. “The reason I do it is because I love it. I have a passion for the less fortunate.”

Although she is still unaware of who nominated her, Hamidi believes her mother passed down her love of charity work and felt very honoured to be acknowledged. “I feel really, really good actually and I still don’t know who nominated me but I would like to thank them.”

Val Buckland, a Kelburn resident for 30 years said Hamidi was a great asset to the community and the nomination was well deserved. “She’s absolutely perfect for the job and has great people skills and its all about being consistent.”

Pete Wedde a well-known figure in the community expressed his delight and commended Hamidi for her work in the community, he said. “I personally think its great, you can only admire their sense of duty.”

Although many were delighted about the new location of the op shop, its arrival was initially met with some resistance and apprehension from some of the community members who felt it would be a ‘bad look’ for the neighbourhood.

Cindy Hill who has owned her Kelburn store for many years said there was initially tension as some people felt the addition of the Op Shop to Kelburn village would bring undesired attention. However, Hill, alongside other members of the community fought for the Op Shop to be opened as she and others felt it would bring colour to the village.

“People thought it would bring bad vibes and undesirables but I fought for it and I have sold things on behalf of the store. Narges brings colour and love to the community.”

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Article by besachembo@gmail.com

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