Volunteer organisations are reporting up to 150% increases in people wanting to lend their skills to unpaid work.
Volunteering New Zealand executive director Tim Burns says many of those are skilled or professional people who have lost their jobs and are wanting to keep up their skills.
However, Mr Burns says despite the huge increase in people signing up to volunteer, just under half of groups he works with still need more.
He says the need for unpaid workers is becoming greater as more people need help from charities.
Alpha Recruitment senior consultant Ashleigh Graham says she is noticing a trend toward volunteering in some candidates who have been made redundant.
Ms Graham says it helps to keep motivated and avoid having gaps in their Curriculum Vitae.