About Us

Learn about this organization


penticton volunteering centreThe South Okanagan Similkameen Volunteer Centre is a registered non profit society and a registered charity that provides access to resources and support services for volunteers, volunteer managers and volunteer based community organizations. The Volunteer Centre provides a direct service to the community meaning that all of our programs and services are open and accessible to the public. Access to resources and support services for everyone, including, but not limited to, volunteers, volunteer managers and volunteer based community organizations are available through our Society. The Volunteer Centre plays a key role in promoting and supporting effective volunteering in our community. Testing.

Our Vision:    A Community that provides the ultimate Volunteer experience.
Our Mission: The Volunteer Centre is committed to building a vibrant community by connecting people through meaningful involvement.

The South Okanagan Similkameen Volunteer Centre:
• Encourages the public to volunteer, and raises awareness about volunteering.
• Provides easy access to opportunities that allows people to connect to their community through volunteering
• Helps the public find volunteer opportunities that fit their interests and needs. Youth, for example, often seek to develop skills and employability, and improve their job prospects.
• Works with community groups to improve their ability to recruit, manage, retain and appreciate volunteers.
• Collaborates with governments, community leaders and organizations to speak on behalf of volunteers and volunteering.

Board of Directors

Board President: Mike Potgieter, B. Comm., MBA 

IT Director – Information Technology Services, KPMG Management Services LP

Mike joined the Volunteer Centre Board to learn about, and get involved in, the community.  Mike is currently the IT Director responsible for Information Technology End User Support at KPMG in Canada. Originally from South Africa, Mike immigrated to Canada in 1998.  He has experience leading large teams and coordinating and implementing large projects.  Mike brings with him his volunteer experience with Motorsport Emergency Turnworkers Association (META), Sports Car Club of BC (SCCBC), and the Semiahmoo Hockey Club.



Secretary: Sandy Bergum
Executive Assistant-Okanagan Hockey Group

Sandy is currently Executive Administrator with the Okanagan Hockey Group.  She moved to Penticton in November of 2016.  Prior to her move to Penticton Sandy worked for TELUS and BC Hydro as a senior manager in Logistics, Business Strategy and Operational Excellence.  Sandy is passionate about the benefits of volunteering and has extensive volunteer experience.   She is currently the Treasurer with the 55+ Senior Games, Ambassador with the Penticton Chamber of Commerce and volunteers at various events including Fest of Ale, Beach Cruise, and Skaha Lake Ultra Swim.




Treasurer: Laura Turnbull, M. Div. , Minister-United Church

Laura is a Penticton United Church Minister. She was Ordained in 1987 and served in churches in B.C., the Prairies and Ontario. She received her Masters of Divinity in Saskatoon and Bachelor of Arts from Brock University. Laura has been involved with community as a volunteer wherever she has been. This includes sitting on the Boards of a Crisis Centre, Art’s Council and Hospice Society. She came to Penticton in 2010. She has experience and knowledge in the area of Board development and governance, important to the governance of the Volunteer Centre.




Director:  Nita Khanal, B.Eng., MBA, MIB 

Nita moved to Canada from Kathmandu, Nepal in 2014.  She is fluent in English, Hindi and Nepali.  Nita is an experienced marketing strategist, and has applied her marketing knowledge while employed in the Software, Plant and Food Research, and Music and Health Care Industries in Nepal and New Zealand.  Nita also volunteered while living in Nepal.  She currently works with the South Okanagan Chamber as their Member Services Coordinator and is interested in volunteering with the Volunteer Centre to help out while she learns more about the community.



Director: Terri Phillips
Events Coordinator, Penticton Chamber of Commerce

Terri Phillips, Currently works with Penticton & Wine Country Chamber of Commerce as their Event Coordinator, she joined the Chamber team in January 2017.  Terri relocated to Penticton in March of 2016 with her family.   She is excited to be part of the Volunteer Centre to learn more about her community she now calls home.