Fundraising began and one of the first things undertaken was to prepare to ‘sell’ glass bricks to form a major feature window in the new building. A competition was run in the five local secondary schools for pupils to ‘design’ this window using a given quantity of bricks but with some artistic options in the colours. The competition was won by Ihaka Dunn of the Kamo High School and the prizes were presented by Whangarei Mayor, Pamela Peters, in April.
Bricks are being sold at two different values – the paler colours at $400 each and the sapphire blue at $1000. This will be a lasting artwork and donors can choose the title they wish to appear on the brick.
The Parish has taken a keen interest in the project and have made a substantial grant towards the building and will continue to work closely with us. An application for funds has gone to ASB Trusts and we continue to seek financial help from our community.
While we would have hoped that the building had been completed in 2007, delays in funding now mean that building will hopefully start before the end of 2007. We are very grateful to the ASB Community Trust for their grant of $150,000. We also thank the many service clubs in our district who have got behind the project.
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Our ‘friends’ play an important role in the work and we would like to increase the numbers. Our Trust Deed actually gives the privilege of voting rights to ‘friends’. To receive a brochure on what it means to be a friend, please contact us at 09 437 6397 and we will happily send one out to you. A subscription as a friend is determined at the Annual General Meeting and is currently $25.00 per annum per household or per group.
MORE BUDGET ADVISORS TRAINED IN 2006
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In July/August we hosted another NZ Federation of Family Budgeting Services basic Budget Adviser training. Those who will join our service are Ross Ansley, Marion Moon, Helen Bedford, Bruce and Helen Matheson. Bruce & Helen are from Waipu and will hopefully be able to serve their own area once they have completed their practical work. Kaikohe and Whangarei budget services also gained new Budget Advisers following the training.
Whangarei Leader and Combined Insurance of NZ ran a ‘Make it Happen’ award and the $800.00 we gained from this went towards meeting the costs of the training.
FUNDRAISING FOR THE NEW CENTRE
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Raising the necessary funds to build continued through 2006 and 2007 with many different avenues explored. After the ASB Community Trust turned down our first application for funding we had to re-think the way ahead. The initial disappointment was great but following that we began to further develop our profile and our presentation to the general public. Encouragement to press forward was given when we received a $40,000 gift towards the project.
The joint enterprise committee were delighted when Paul Shepherd joined us to assist with the fund raising efforts. His first task was to look at how the Care Centre work was viewed by other agencies and professionals in the area, and to develop an effective written presentation that could be used to both raise the profile of the Centre and to gain financial support. This material surprised us all and we were heartened to see that over 30 agencies refer clients to the Centre. It also revealed that around 30 people are involved in the work in either voluntary or paid capacities.
A Sponsored Promotional Dinner was held in July 2007 inviting local service clubs and media along with business owners who had sown into the Centre in the early days. Roger White and Ruth Penny from Auckland entertained free of charge; Cowley’s Hire Centre provided tables, punch bowl etc; Ruth Penny and the Board members catered for the meal. In all, this gave impetus to involve the community further in the project and it is great that clubs have ‘bought a brick’ and/or invited us in to show our power point presentation.
Just prior to our AGM on 23rd September 2007, we had word from ASB Community Trust that they had agreed to grant us $150,000 towards the project! Within minutes of finding this out, a call was received from the Sunrise Rotary Club in Whangarei to enquire about the project and wanting to put a sizeable portion into a specific part of the project! There was much rejoicing!
An application for $120,000 is before both Lotteries Community Facilities Board and Lion Foundation to complete the major funding for the project. The outcome will be known in December.
Meanwhile we press on towards the goal. Building consent is before the Whangarei District Council. Builders will be approached in the near future to tender for the project.
TEAM CHANGES & CHALLENGES
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In 2007 Sally Shepherd joined us as a trainee counsellor. She is studying at Welltech.
Ann Tuffin took over the full role as Budget Co-ordinator and Margaret Malcolm began to reduce hours as she moves towards retiring. Carina Wykes trained as a Budget Advisor. Janet Puriri began serving each Wednesday at ‘The Pulse’ where they requested budget advice help for those who attend the ‘one stop shop’ for various social services.
We have been approached by NorthAble to give them one day per week of budget advice in their premises in John Street. We were also approached by Kamo High School to run a short free budgeting course as a ‘night class’ – this will trial in October with Marion Moon and Ann Tuffin tutoring.
In 2007 we were engaged in some more supervised access sessions. Space is limiting but it is hoped that, with new and adequate premises, we will be able to get more involved next year.
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With the requirements for charitable trust changes coming up in the near future we applied for registration as soon as we could. On 11 July 2007 we were certificated and our registration number is CC10599. Another positive step forward in the life of Whangarei Anglican Care Trust!
OUR GOAL IS REACHED – A PURPOSE BUILT HOME BECOMES A REALITY!
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In October at the Board meeting it was agreed that we needed to press on towards starting the building early January. In order to do this we needed to be sure that we could finance the project even if our application was turned down. The proposal was that bridging finance be sought – but that the Board would need to be first to put up their hands. A miracle took place around the meeting table that day when over $100,000 of short term finance was pledged – each and every one had taken ownership and responsibility and we were able to press forward!
In November we realised that we needed to have a Faculty from the Anglican Diocese of Auckland before building could begin. John Blyth aided us in preparing the necessary documents to file. Bob Adams, Paul Shepherd and Shirley Mellsop all travelled to Auckland to the Faculty meeting and came home rejoicing that it was granted there and then!
Mid December we heard that the Whangarei District Council had issued our Building Permit and that funding of $110,000 had been approved from Lotteries Community Facility Fund. We were then in a position to let the contract which was won by A Line Builders of Kamo.
Bishop Kitohi blessed the site and turned the first sod on December 31st 2007 in preparation of actual building.
John Torr is ready to do the work of Project Manager.
2008 BUILDING BEGINS & COMPLETES UNDER BUDGET – AHEAD OF SCHEDULE
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We got off to a great start – beginning the building process a few days ahead of schedule. Only one day was lost to bad weather and it was a remarkable programme where all targets were met on time.
The community got behind us and we have many to thank for their generous donations of time, product and financial assistance. They are acknowledged with glass brick notation in our feature wall.
We were able to move into the building on May 16th ready to open for clients on Monday 19th. Generous grants from The Trusts Charitable Foundation and The Oxford Sports Trust enabled us to equip the building with fixtures and fittings prior to our official opening.
Bishop John and Bishop Kitohi jointly opened the building in a special ceremony attended by many dignitaries and friends of the Centre on Sunday 22nd June. Great rejoicing was had by all, especially Rev Neil Fuge who had the original vision for the work.
With such a wonderful facility we have been able to enjoy it with many other community groups.
We added Ruakaka counselling this year with the services of Carol Tolley, as well as expanding the counselling team in Whangarei – Becky Joyce joined us as a Trainee Counsellor.
Dianne Harris joined our team – Dianne is a qualified budget advisor who came to us from the North Shore when she and her husband relocated to Whangarei. At the end of the year we sadly farewelled Margaret Skinner, who had served almost five years as a budget advisor.
We were blessed in receiving a grant from The Trusts Charitable Foundation in order to purchase a new photocopier – our latest newsletter was printed ‘in house’ and in colour on this wonderful new asset!
Late in the year our IT consultant told us about charities being able to receive software from Techsoup (Microsoft). This enabled us to apply and receive software to the value of over $9500 for around $380! What a difference this makes to us. The Oxford Sports Trust enabled us to buy two new computers plus back-up equipment.
2009 A NEW YEAR WITH NEW CHALLENGES
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Ray Mellsop stepped down from the Chairman’s role and was replaced by John Blyth. John has a background in commerce. He completed his masters’ degree in Strategic Planning so is in a great position to lead us into the next phase of our operation.
As we face challenging economic times the year has begun with a huge increase in budgeting clients along with a steady flow of counselling clients. Opportunities have arisen to speak to many groups about Budget Advice and we look forward to having some workshops here in the future.
A Woman to Woman course is held in Dargaville and also in Whangarei. Work is done on a Public Relations package offering our services to the business community. We look forward to a positive response to this.
A basic budget adviser training was held in April / May and we hope that we were able to add to our team of dedicated volunteers – Adrienne Hutchings, Jane Cronin and Andrew Brown.
Sadly, Helen Torr stepped out of the role of Manager/Senior Counsellor but remains part of the counselling team. Her contribution over the last nine years has been invaluable, and her leadership has brought about clarity of purpose and professionalism to all aspects of the service.
Joyce Beehre took up the role of Counselling Co-ordinator and management took on a new shape. The management team consists of the Counselling Co-ordinator, the Budgeting Co-ordinator and the Administrator – with oversight and assistance from the Board Chairman.
Now that we have achieved the building programme we can concentrate on ways to serve our community even better. A number of group programmes will be offered along with possible moves to support businesses with staff training and equipping.
New Strategic Plan
Having achieved the building programme which was the central core of our strategic plan, and having John Blyth (who did his masters degree in strategic planning) it was decided that this was the most important thing to achieve in this year was a new strategic plan. This was worked on by both the Board of Trustees and the working team – and was completed for presentation at the Annual General Meeting on 20th September 2009. In brief the Strategic Goals are:
To increase and enhance the social services that we can provide to our communities.
Quality and Education
To enhance our programmes to meet the needs of our clients; to pass all audits with merit; and to be proactive in developing the service and to retain top professionals.
Administration and Finance
Through financial responsibility and management, to provide a stable framework for expansion of current programmes.
To promote the services we provide to our community and districts.
We immediately started implementing this plan both through our annual budget and through our approaches to staffing. In October Di McLiver started as administrative assistant to help with the ever increasing demands in the office. By December we had also selected a new team member, Judy Nasarek, to fill a brand new position – that of a ‘Seniors Community Worker’ to work with over 65s to assist them in staying in their own homes for as long as possible. To do this will take a lot of liaison with groups in the community and we see this as a pivotal role. Selwyn Foundation and Minchin Trust have funded this position.
In August Brian and Paulette Berryman travelled from Palmerston North to conduct an Enneagram Workshop. This was opened up to the wider public and was well received with 35 people attending.
Community Education – Budgeting
Dianne Harris was appointed to this position in August 2009. She has a passion for education and by the end of the year has run courses with People Potential, Kamo High School Adult Education and run numerous short presentations with various groups both in Whangarei and Dargaville. She began ‘in house’ courses with ‘Creative Christmas’ – a two hour workshop making inexpensive Christmas gifts and giving helpful tips to prevent overspending. It is anticipated that there will be a couple of workshops each term.
The Woman to Woman course was run in Whangarei. This ten week course was facilitated by Irene Peeters, Helen Torr and Sally Shepherd.
A Boundaries Course was run in conjunction with Te Ora Hau. This was well attended and plans are in place for further networking
The ‘Healthy Living’ series was run by Heather Gribben. We hope that these will be a regular feature on our calendar both at the Care Centre and at other venues.
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The basic structures are well in place to serve our community. With the addition in January 2010 of our Seniors Community Worker the service will continue to grow and develop.
Our trained staff will listen carefully and help our clients to find answers. This confidential service is offered in a Christian environment.