EARTHQUAKES

Simon Barnett Simon Barnett CREDIT: BANDS 4 HOPE

Banding together: Simon Barnett launches BANDS 4 HOPE for Christchurch Mayoral Earthquake Fund

Friday 18 March 2011, 8:37AM
By BANDS 4 HOPE
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CHRISTCHURCH

Christchurch local Simon Barnett is asking for a hand to help raise at least $1 million for the Christchurch Mayoral Earthquake Fund.

‘BANDS 4 HOPE’ is an appeal organised and fully funded by TelstraClear. The company has donated 200,000 black and red wristbands designed to help New Zealanders and people around the world to show their support for Christchurch. Each band can be purchased for a donation of $5 or more and all of the money raised by TelstraClear will go directly to the Christchurch Mayoral Earthquake Fund.

As well as raising vital funds to aid the rebuilding effort, BANDS 4 HOPE offers people a tangible way to show their support for all those affected by the Christchurch earthquake.

Although personally affected, national media personality Simon Barnett has volunteered his time as an official Ambassador for the appeal, and like many Christchurch locals, he’s persevered through the tragedy with a sense of hope and some Kiwi ingenuity. Barnett and radio co-host Gary McCormack have ‘MacGyvered’ their way back onto the airwaves for their breakfast radio show, broadcasting every weekday morning from a caravan at Addington Raceway. As Barnett explains:

“Like many other families, we have lost our house in the earthquake but we haven’t lost our home; its right here in Christchurch. We will rebuild and we’re strong enough to get through it. With people around New Zealand and the world buying and wearing their wristbands it will feel like everyone is literally giving us a hand to get back on our feet. This is the spirit of the BANDS 4 HOPE appeal.”

Christchurch Mayor Bob Parker has praised the initiative, and he and his team are already sporting the black and red BANDS 4 HOPE. His Royal Highness Prince William is also showing his support for the appeal, and was pictured putting his bands on as soon as he arrived at Christchurch Airport.

TelstraClear Chief Executive Officer Dr. Allan Freeth says the appeal was launched to support staff, customers and families affected by the quake. He also says it has gained momentum incredibly quickly, but it is only one part of the organisation’s commitment to the region:

“We have had a base in Christchurch for 20 years and we wanted to do something meaningful to help our people, our customers and the whole community. We are staggered by the huge demand for BANDS 4 HOPE.

We believe the appeal will help to raise both funds and spirits in the immediate term, and as a business we are also passionately committed to Christchurch for the long term.”

Last week, thousands of people from across New Zealand and around the world sought out a purchase link on the BANDS 4 HOPE Facebook page. 7,816 bands were ordered and $39,080 was raised in the first week alone.

BANDS 4 HOPE are now available from participating New Zealand PostShops and online via the BANDS 4 HOPE website: www.Bands4Hope.co.nz.