Hospice role a perfect fit for Sandy

SVEN HERSELMAN
Last updated 07:44 05/12/2012

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There is a new face at Hospice Marlborough, with Sandy Inwood taking over from Natalie Lawler as the fundraising and promotions co-ordinator.

A born and raised South Island girl, Sandy is originally from the tiny farming town of Rotherham outside Hanmer Springs, having moved to Blenheim in 1989 with her husband Mike and their two children.

The couple also had a taste of big city life while working in the United States for two years, managing a sheep farm and selling its produce in New York City.

But it is life back in New Zealand and putting her organisational skills to good use that make Sandy happiest.

"Since my kids were young I've been involved with non-profit organisations like Plunket and school committees," Sandy said.

After moving to Marlborough she got a job in administration at Kono Seafood, and was involved with the Association of Administrative Professionals New Zealand (AAPNZ), serving as the southern region leader and later as president for two years.

"It was great serving with AAPNZ, which taught me a lot about public speaking and gave me a good deal of experience with organising events," Sandy said.

The time she and Mike spent in the US, from 1999 to 2001, was a belated overseas experience for the couple.

"The kids had left home and this opportunity came up for Mike to manage a sheep farm in New York State so we went for it.

The job of transporting produce from the farm in to NY City and selling it at the huge farmers' markets in Manhattan and in Brooklyn fell to Sandy, who revelled in the experience. New York has a great vibe about it, it's a really amazing place to visit.

"I also met so many interesting people at the market, and interestingly it was the same people who came each week - even though it is a big city they live in small communities," Sandy said.

She and Mike finished their contract at the farm in March and travelled through Europe as well as visiting Britain and Russia.

By the time of the terrorist attacks on the Twin Towers in New York, she and Mike were back in Blenheim watching the news broadcast from bed.

"It was so surreal to watch; we were just in total shock.

"The market we used to sell at is just a few blocks from the towers so we knew that area well - it had become our city too," Sandy said.

Her road to working at the hospice began around two years ago when she did a level five business administration course and identified that she would like to take on volunteer work if she could.

"It was coincidental that this job came up at [the] hospice, and although it is a paid position, it allows me to work with a non-profit organisation that does such amazing work."

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- The Marlborough Express

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