World Potato Congress To Support Children In Earthquake Ravished Christchurch, New Zealand.
Allan Parker, President and CEO of World Potato Congress (WPC), announced recently that adoption of TE PUNA WHAIORA, Children’s Health Camps as a beneficiary. “Our specific objective,” said Parker, “is to offer financial support to help reconstruct the Glenelg camp in Christchurch.” The city hosted our Congress in 2009, Mr. Parker noted. At that time it was a beautiful, vibrant urban centre, “The City of Gardens.” Now much of their infrastructure is destroyed and they need help to rebuild.
Two Massive earthquakes struck Christchurch New Zealand during the past year, causing damages in excess of $16 Billion and claiming 181 lives. Much of the City of Christchurch was destroyed, including Glenelg Children’s Health Camp, a facility dedicated to supporting the city’s most vulnerable children. The directors of World Potato Congress Inc (WPC) have decided to help the city and its children.
“We are calling on the international potato community to join us in supporting those earthquake victims who don’t have the resources to help themselves,” said Parker. WPC has committed CAD $1,000 to initiate the fund and is asking partners and subscribers to consider contributing.
Dr Fiona Inkpen, CEO of TE PUNA WHAIORA Children’s Health Camps, welcomed the support of WPC, noting, “The funds the Potato Congress raises will go towards our Glenelg Camp … so we can bring love, laughter and security back to the lives of the children and families who rely on our services.”
The Glenelg, Children’s Health Camp has been red stickered which means that, for safety reasons, it cannot be accessed. It will require a complete rebuild and relocation. It is estimated the total cost will be NZ $6.5 million. Fortunately, insurance will cover $5 million leaving a $1.5 million shortfall.
TE PUNA WHAIORA Children’s Health Camps uses a ‘whole child approach’ in identifying and supporting the most vulnerable children between 5-12 years of age. Their service is child-centred and family focussed. According to Dr Inkpen the last twelve months have been particularly hard, “events such as the earthquakes can be extremely traumatic for these children who are already vulnerable,” she said.
The children referred are those who may be experiencing poor school achievement, high levels of hyperactivity, emotional issues, peer relationship difficulties, chronic health problems and poor social skills. The child and family may also have inadequate or insufficient protective factors to manage identified challenges, such as parenting skills, poor access to services, poor housing or lack of resources.
“We at TE PUNA WHAIORA Children’s Health Camps were elated to learn that World Potato Congress has decided to help our children,” said Dr Inkpen, “It was like feeling the life force of unknown people who deeply care about the children of this world. With such support we will rebuild, we will be stronger and we will have forged new friendships and good memories in the process.”
To learn more and make a contribution contact:
Visit the TE PUNA WHAIORA Children’s Health Camps website: www.healthcamps.org.nz
To view a PowerPoint presentation go to:
Click on “Christchurch Support” and follow the link.