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Akaroa School Celebrates Common Room Community Project

Akaroa School Celebrates Common Room Community Project

The Akaroa Area School has celebrated the combined effort by its students, the wider community and several businesses to create a new wonderful common room for its pupils.

Within six months, an ambitious idea by teacher Garry Brittenden to teach his students some new life skills and build a much-needed common room has produced a terrific new facility for the students to enjoy.

The school took the opportunity to thank businesses for their generosity, including Stonewood Homes Managing Director Brent Mettrick who was in Akaroa to join the Grand Opening celebrations.

Stonewood Homes donated double-glazed aluminium doors and windows, which significantly reduced the budget for the project.

Mr Mettrick said he was eager to help the school as his family has had a long relationship with the township where they spend their holidays, and where his daughter now also runs a hospitality business.

Mr Brittenden said the school had been overwhelmed by the support from local contractors and corporate firms like Stonewood Homes and Placemakers that enabled this $60,000 project to be achieved for less than 10% of the real costs.

Local builder Richie O’Malley agreed to oversee the student workforce, while a local farmer supplied macrocapa logs that were cut by local sawmiller Don Wright for exterior board and battens.

Mr Brittenden, the teacher in charge of the project said that the students have learnt a lot more than just building skills “although they have learnt plenty of those”.

“The project has enabled them to see what happens when you interact in positive way with your community, and just how possible it is to create things if you are prepared to take action."


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