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Cheque shirts worth $10,000

December 11, 2006

Cheque shirts worth $10,000

Raukatauri Music Therapy Trust founder and trustee Hinewehi Mohi (right) in a NZ Music Month T-shirt while music therapist Yid-Ee Goh wears the $10,000 cheque T-shirt.

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Far from giving the shirt off their backs, Kiwi music fans have been doing just the opposite for the benefit of a national music therapy charity.

T-shirts manufactured on behalf of the NZ Music Commission and sold through Hallensteins to promote NZ Music Month have resulted in a cash windfall for the Raukatauri Music Therapy Trust.

Kiwi music fans purchasing and donning the distinctive black and white T-shirts generated $10,000 and the commission presented a cheque to the trust at a function in Auckland on Thursday 7 Dec.

The Raukatauri Music Therapy Trust runs a centre in the Auckland inner suburb of Newton providing music therapy for special needs children of school age and younger. It is New Zealand’s first music therapy centre.

Trust chair Campbell Smith says the funds will be put to good use.

“We are extremely grateful for these funds,” he says. “There’s a waiting list for places here at the centre and the money will be used to bring in new therapy staff in order to shorten that list.”

The Trust gets no government funding and last night’s function doubled as a thank you to artists who performed free of charge at a charity auction in aid of the Raukatauri Centre.

That event raised $210,000 to assist the centre with day-to-day running costs and provide funds to help hire new therapists and go towards plans to build a purpose-built music therapy centre.

About The Raukatauri Music Therapy Centre

The centre provides music therapy for special needs children of school age and younger. It is New Zealand’s first music therapy centre.

The idea grew from a Kiwi family’s experience of music therapy in the UK and, subsequently, the realisation there was a need to provide a similar service here.

Singer and songwriter Hinewehi Mohi, her husband George and daughter Hineraukatauri spent time at the Nordoff Robbins Music Therapy Centre in London in 1999.

Hineraukatauri has severe cerebral palsy. It was soon evident that therapy through music struck a chord for her. For the first time in her life, she had an opportunity to participate in and control an activity and to actually create something. Most important for Hineraukatauri, music became a means to communicate.

Upon their return to New Zealand, the family determined to establish a music therapy centre here. The dream was realised with the opening in early 2004 of the Raukatauri Music Therapy Centre (RMTC) in Auckland.

The centre moved to bigger premises in Newton in 2005 comprising of two workrooms an observation facility, an office and waiting room and associated facilities.

Currently there are two full time, qualified music therapists and an assortment of musical instruments. These include a piano, snare drums, splash cymbals, crash cymbals, wind chimes, xylophones, tambourines, loads of drumsticks and mallets and much more!

The work at the centre focuses primarily on children. However, the aim is to ultimately provide therapy for all age groups within the wider community.

ENDS

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