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The West Coast had a great range of entrants to the Trustpower Community Awards last year – this weekend we’ll see how well they stand up.
Emily Beaton, Trustpower Community Relations Representative

Joining the West Coasters at the Wellington event will be representatives from 22 other voluntary groups or organisations from around the country, each of whom were Supreme Winners at their regional Trustpower Community Awards. 

Trustpower Community Relations Emily Beaton says the each of the West Coast winners are “the cream of the crop”, and have put together fantastic presentations.

"The whole Coast should be really proud of what the West Coast Volunteer Fire Brigades did for their communities last year,” Miss Beaton says.

Following the Easter storm that swept the South Island’s West Coast settlements and towns last year, the volunteer fire brigades staged a huge clean-up operation in tandem with their local communities.

Miss Beaton also praises the Kumara Resident’s Trust for their commitment to beautifying their village.

“It is fantastic to see a group so passionate about their town, you can tell that they are proud of where they live and to see that is inspiring. They are giving tourists and other New Zealanders yet another reason to visit the beautiful West Coast” says Miss Beaton.

The Buller High School Kapa Haka group have done an incredible amount to increase Maori tikanga participation in the community.

Trustpower Community Relations Representative Jess Somerville says its incredible what a bunch of motivated staff, students and whanau can achieve.

“This group of students fundraised their hearts out for their trip to Hawaii and the community was right behind them every step of the way. Their efforts have meant there is a stronger emphasis on Maori culture at school and this has filtered into the community too” says Miss Somerville.   

Each group will present for eight minutes on their achievements, also outlining why they deserve to win the top prize of $2,500. Presentations take place on Saturday (March 28) at the Memorial Lecture Theatre at Victoria University, followed by an awards dinner at Te Papa.

Along with the two representatives from each of the groups, Buller District Councillor Lynn Brooks, Westland District Mayor Mike Havill and Grey District Mayor Tony Kokshoorn will be in attendance.

Meanwhile, groups can soon start thinking about entries for the Trustpower Community Awards soon with entries opening on 20 April. Anyone can enter a group, and all voluntary groups and non-profit organisations are eligible.