The Wanganui District Council and Te Runanga O Tupoho have worked closely with Sustainable Whanganui in establishing our Resource Recovery Centre but that is only one aspect of their work. Sustainable Whanganui is involved in so many other projects that help and enhance our community.
The Trustpower Community Awards were announced and presented on Monday 18th November at a function attended by 300 people at the War Memorial Hall in Wanganui.
For winning the Supreme Award, Sustainable Whanganui Trust received a framed certificate, a trophy and $1,500 prize money. Sustainable Whanganui Trust now has the opportunity to represent the region at the 2013 Trustpower National Community Awards, which are being held in Invercargill and Southland regions in March 2014.
In total, Trustpower presented over $5,500 to various community groups through the night’s Awards.
Trustpower Community Relations Coordinator Suzi Luff says Sustainable Whanganui Trust is proactively encouraging a sustainable community.
“Sustainable Whanganui Trust is leading the community towards being more resilient, localised and self-sufficient, through education, events, projects and advocacy.
Some examples include their Green Bikes project, which uses donated and recycled bikes, and teaches people about the benefits of cycling, as well as sharing repair tips too.
Their Sustainable Schools project sees fruit trees and edible plants given to local schools. Teachers receive professional development focused on the environment and the kids take part in practical workshops that encourage sustainability to be an everyday part of school life. So far, 20 schools are a part of this.
And using local wisdom and talent, the Trust runs lots of events like workshops and seminars, with a huge focus on education and advocacy.
They also support the establishment of community gardens with information and advice.
And they even take opportunities to support other groups and events. Take this year’s Masters Games – this team ensured that this big event was waste-free, by removing all biodegradable and recyclables from the waste stream.
Add to this, they also run a very active online forum that is a hub for environmental education for the community.
So for running a cohesive schedule of activities and programmes that encourage and educate the local community about the vital benefits of sustainability, Sustainable Whanganui Trust will be representing Whanganui District at the next Trustpower National Community Awards,” says Suzi.
Mayor Annette Main said the high number of entries reflected the key role that voluntary organisations play in the community.
“It has been inspiring to meet representatives of those groups at the awards and hear their stories,” Mayor Main said.
“Volunteers are the people who help make our community the great place it is. Their work and dedication adds to the vibrancy and community spirit we enjoy in Whanganui.
“Congratulations to Sustainable Whanganui for taking out the inaugural Supreme Award. The Wanganui District Council and Te Runanga O Tupoho have worked closely with Sustainable Whanganui in establishing our Resource Recovery Centre but that is only one aspect of their work. Sustainable Whanganui is involved in so many other projects that help and enhance our community.
“I also congratulate all the nominees. The judges had an incredibly tough job to choose the winners because there are so many organisations which deserve recognition for their work and I want to thank them all on behalf of our community.”
Sustainable Whanganui Trust is the first recipient of a trophy crafted by award-winning local artist Lyndsay Paterson. Hand blown, the hot formed glass has been made at the furnace and then cut, polished and engraved when cold.
Crafted into a river stone shape, Lyndsay says it’s a signifier of place, time and memory.
“For the people of Whanganui, the great river has been central to the stories of our landscape for centuries. And landscape is an archive of people and their stories,” says Lyndsay.
"The trophy has been designed to represent the Whanganui District and the coming together of people, and therefore community", says Suzi.
“Building on Lyndsay’s design and having the river stone as a symbol of landscape that records people and their stories, the well-known whakatauki - ko au te awa, ko te awa ko au, I am the river and the river is me – has been beautifully engraved into the glass, to show the connection between the river, its people and the huge and selfless contribution volunteers make to the community of Whanganui District every day,” says Suzi.
A staggering 94 entries were received for this year’s Trustpower Energy Direct Whanganui District Community Awards, and competition was tough.
Other recipients at tonight’s Trustpower Energy Direct Whanganui District Community Awards were:
Heritage and Environment
Runner-Up: Wanganui Tramping Club
Winner: Sustainable Whanganui Trust
Health and Well Being
Commendation: Women’s Network Whanganui
Runner-Up: River City Events Volunteers
Winner: Hospice Wanganui
Arts and Culture
Runner-Up: Artists Open Studios Whanganui
Winner: Wanganui Opera Week Committee
Sport and Leisure
Commendation: Kaierau Netball Club
Commendation: Wanganui Riding for the Disabled
Runner-Up: Wanganui Volunteer Coastguard Inc.
Winner: Wanganui Multisport and Triathlon Club
Education and Child/Youth Development
Runner-Up: Tawhero School Breakfast Crew
Winner: Springvale Playcentre
Sustainable Whanganui Trust