It’s been a tough year for the people of Christchurch, but proving that their plight is not forgotten, New Zealand Young Farmers recently made a donation to an organisation that has proved a great source of help to many after the earthquakes that changed the face of Christchurch.
Earlier this week NZYF CEO Richard Fitzgerald presented the Christchurch YMCA with a cheque for $34,470.15. The majority of the money was raised through Road to Recovery Auctions that were held at The National Bank Young Farmer Contest’s Regional Finals, earlier this year.
Christchurch YMCA CEO Josie Ogden Schroeder was blown away by the donation.
“It is phenomenally generous and humbling to get this donation. It’s an extra boost and we will be able to make this money go a really really long way.”
Mrs Ogden Schroeder sad that the money would be put to good use with the young people of Christchurch.
“We deal with thousands of young people in different capacities every year. Some are marginalised youth in our education and training programmes and some are high functioning young people that are volunteers. Regardless of their level it’s all about developing them as people.”
Mr Fitzgerald said that the development of young people was a commonality between NZYF and the YMCA, and it seemed a good fit to donate to their urban counterparts.
“Christchurch has had a really rough time this year, so it’s great to be able to help an organisation that not only has very similar values to NZYF, but also one that has implemented many worthwhile projects to help the people of Christchurch as a result of the earthquakes.”
NZYF National Office is based in Methven so staff had some experience with the earthquakes, but Mr Fitzgerald said that when staff and NZYF Members spent time digging silt in February with the Farmy Army, the enormity of the situation really hit.
“Being out there in those badly effected suburbs really brought everything home; it was very humbling to see how those residents were coping with a very tough situation.”
This prompted NZYF to auction off goods that were kindly donated by some of the Contest Sponsors; Honda, The National Bank, Echo and Ravensdown. The money was also raised through donations from many Clubs and individuals within the organisations – some Clubs donated up to $1000 out of their own bank accounts.
The donation to the YMCA is just part of over $100,000 that was raised by NZYF and its members for earthquake relief. The North Otago District contributed a huge portion of that when they raised over $68,000 for the Mayoral Fund.
St John’s also received an extra boost last week thanks to NZYF Members. The Christchurch City Club took part in the Amazing Quake Race at the Canterbury A&P Show. St Johns; as their chosen charity received their $2000 prize.