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EIT supports new Bay sport and health centre

EIT supports new Bay sport and health centre

Hawke’s Bay’s premier tertiary provider, Eastern Institute of Technology (EIT), has put its support and experience behind the new community health and sport centre currently under construction at the Hawke’s Bay Regional Sports Park in Hastings.

The new centre. which is being built by the Hawke’s Bay Community Fitness Centre Trust, will be called the EIT Institute of Sport and Health.

The Chair of the Trust, Sir Graeme Avery, who was one of the driving forces behind AUT Millennium Institute of Sport and Health in Auckland, said the trust was delighted to secure EIT as the naming sponsor.

“This is a significant milestone on the road to Hawke’s Bay having its own world-class Centre of Excellence in health and sport.”

“EIT coming on board creates a number of exciting opportunities for all concerned and will help us towards achieving our overall goal of giving our community the opportunities to be the best they can be in sport, health and well-being.

“The Institute will have programmes promoting healthy lifestyles, special programmes for at-risk youth and community health and wellbeing programmes, as well as the development of talented local sports people."

Sir Graeme said the Institute’s work would not be limited to the facility itself, but that staff would team up with recreation centres in Waipukurau and Wairoa to deliver satellite services

"The social and economic benefits will be for the whole region."

EIT’s Deputy CEO Mark Oldershaw said EIT was proud to have its name featured as the key sponsor of the Institute.

“From EIT’s perspective, we have all recognised that this is a landmark project and probably one of those opportunities that comes about once a generation in terms of getting involved in a significant regional project. This initiative is one that genuinely is going to change the lives of people in Hawke’s Bay.”

“EIT is involved on a number of levels. We will certainly use the Institute to deliver a range of programmes, including degree provision from vocational certificates through to applied degrees and postgraduate qualifications, to ensure that the ongoing needs of the region are being met. It is exciting to have both teaching space and a research lab on site, which we can use along with our programmes based in the community.” Mr Oldershaw said.

“There are also opportunities to get involved in research as well and they may be projects that we lead, or they may be projects that we operate in partnership with other institutes. I know that we, and Sir Graeme through the trust, have started thinking around that.”

“A key thing for us is to get involved and to continue to develop our community-centred research opportunities through listening to the needs of our various communities.”

Mr Oldershaw said the partnership “fits on so many levels”.

“It is going to be a really good opportunity for our School of Health and Sports Science to take that next leap. Who knows where it could lead. It is hoped that there will be opportunities for other EIT Schools and faculties to get involved at some stage. We are open to where that may take us.”

Construction on the $25 million Institute began earlier this year with completion of the first phase of Stage One, the centre itself, expected in April next year, for opening by mid-2019. The centre is being constructed by local company MCL Construction. Construction will begin on an accommodation hostel in September and this is expected to also be ready by April next year. The third phase of Stage One is expected to begin later next year and will be an extension of the building.

Stage Two, which is still a few years off, will see the building of an Aquatic Centre with a 50m Olympic pool and a learn-to-swim pool.
About the Hawke’s Bay Community Fitness Centre Trust
The purpose of the Hawke's Bay Community Fitness Centre Trust is to improve the health and wellbeing of the people of Hawke's Bay through the provision of:

• a multi-purpose facility (indoor and outdoor) at the Hawke's Bay Regional Sports Park in which sports performance, fitness and other community activities will be undertaken to promote regular physical activity and healthy lifestyles;
• Schools’ activities including healthy eating and physical literacy education and athlete development programmes.
• A community-based and led obesity intervention research study and at-risk youth programmes.

The Trust is an incorporated charitable trust and was formed by Hawke's Bay Eastern Institute of Technology (EIT), Sport Hawke’s Bay and Hawke’s Bay Sports Events & Education Consortium, with support from AUT University and AUT Millennium Institute of Sport & Health.

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