Craig’s Investment Partners partners with Community Foundations of New Zealand, Momentum Waikato’s national ‘peak body’, to run an annual ‘Christmas Giving’ programme aimed at supporting community groups around the country.
The collaborative approach sees each regional Community Foundation nominate a list of proven charitable and for-purpose organisations, and then their local Craig’s branch selects a number of them to receive a monetary Christmas gift.
The focus for 2021 is youth, environment and mental health. Six community organisations in the Waikato have received donations they weren’t expecting of between $1,000 and $5,000 each.
Billy Graham Youth Foundation runs Te Awamutu Boxing Academy for at-risk kids between the ages of 7 and 18 into boxing, to teach them how to deal with their emotions and be ‘part of a family’.
The Mission is ‘Making champion young people who give back into their communities.’ The principles of best-practice youth development are applied to engage with young people from every background. This is achieved by creating safe spaces, building friendships and supporting the kids.
CHAMPION: Abi Lapthorn was recently awarded the Police Commissioner's Challenge Coin for her performance at Te Awamutu Boxing Academy.
“Thanks so much for this donation, I love the idea of what you are doing,” said Head Coach Chris Graham. “After discussion as a team, we have decided to utilise this money among the neediest families within our Boxing Academy. We will purchase 15 Christmas hampers, each with all the ingredients needed to make a really good Christmas family meal.”
MATES Matter NZ Charitable Trust provides mental wellness and suicide prevention programs in the Waikato, in partnership with A-OK. They work to increase the options for help and to enable more people to have life-supporting conversations.
The heart of Mates Matter NZ is to provide a suicide prevention approach that is specific to the needs of workplaces and communities within the Waikato. It also helps workplaces, communities, sports teams etc to reduce harm and increase health and safety.
Founder Craig Bulloch says MATES matter provides tools for organisations and individuals to make a positive change and dismantle the stigma around mental health problems.
“He aha te mea nui o te ao - What is the most important thing in the world?
“He tangata, he tangata, he tangata - It is the people, it is the people, it is the people.
“The fantastic donation from Craig’s Investment Partners will be going towards training up facilitators who will provide the MATES matters programmes in the Waikato region,” says Craig.
Ngaruawahia Volunteer Fire Brigade responds to 350+ calls per year, including with the ambulance to heart attacks and suicides.
The Brigade has been gifted second-hand playground equipment by the Waikato District Council and are fundraising for the building materials and labour needed to install it at their station. This will create a safe space for children to play and spend time while their brigade-member parents are engaged at the station.
DEMAND: Ngaruawahia Volunteer Fire Brigade at the Matakana Island fire last summer.
“I would like to thank Craig’s for the donation and Momentum Waikato for the coordination that will allow us to build a play area for fire brigade members’ children,” says Brigade Chief Karl Lapwood.
“Families of a volunteer firefighter miss out on so much, as they can be called away any time 24/7, often for long time, which takes its toll on their families left behind. Especially since Covid -19 has arrived onto our shores, when I have seen anxiety levels rise within our membership.”
Pūniu River Care begins with seeds and finishes at planting and maintaining the banks, to realise their 40-year vision to restore the Pūniu River to what it once was.
The Pūniu River flows out from the Pureora Forest and is a Waikato River tributary, at 57kms long, one of the longest secondary tributaries in Aotearoa. Currently it is not classified as being of a swimmable standard, the tuna stocks have depleted, the banks are eroding and over 10,000 tonnes of sediment discharges into the Waipā from the Pūniu every year.
SUCCESS: Pūniu River Care are an award-winning marae-based social enterprise.
“We wish to express our attitude towards the kind donations towards our kaupapa of creating ‘safe places, healthy waters, healthy people’,” says spokesperson Aimee Tupaea.
“Following a successful season of propagation and planting in 2021, this will assist in celebrating and acknowledging our staff’s hard mahi as we look forward to a well-deserved break over the Christmas season.”
“Nei rā te mihi a Pūniu River Care kia koutou katoa. Mā te wāhi ngaro tātou katoa e tiaki e manaaki i ēnei wā. Rire, rire, hau. Paimārire.”
The Starters Foundation provides stationery and clothing care packages for new entrants at low-decile primary schools in the Waikato. Funds are raised and networks grown through community events based on physical challenges.
Founder Matt Wallbank was inspired by his parents who, having both taught at low-decile schools in the Waikato his whole life, often see the need to ensure new entrant children don’t face the barrier of no stationery and school clothing on their first day of school.
“Would love to say a massive thank you to Craig’s Investment Partners for supporting our endeavours to provide stationery and uniform to children in need,” said Matt. “We are greatly looking forward to putting the funding to good use in the 2022 school year.”
Trees for Survival a nationwide native tree planting programme where schools pot-up and grow about 1000 native seedlings every year. Currently 141 schools are involved, with more joining in all the time.
Schoolchildren, supported by teachers, farmers and local communities, plant their seedlings along streams and in wetlands and erosion-prone land, often as community planting days.
The Craig’s gift will support the plant growing efforts at Ngaruawahia High and Te Awamutu Primary School, specifically to cover the cost of gathering native seeds from the forest and the potting mix delivered to the school.
“The kids ‘pot up’ the seedlings in planter bags,” said Programme Manager Sally Clegg. “They get five different sorts, usually flax, mahoe, karamu, manuka and then one of the sedges like carex or cyperus. They look after them for nine months, and then plant out these trees and grasses.”