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Green Thumbs Up for Kids at Whau River Ecological Adventure

28 January 2014

Starting The Year Right Through Environment Clean-Up

On Sunday, 26th January, 60 members of Filipino-Kiwi families along with other migrants celebrated Auckland Anniversary weekend through the Whau River Ecological Adventure to take care of native plants at the child-friendly environment of Tony Segedin Reserve, Avondale.

The event was organised by the Filipino community women’s group Pinay Aotearoa Inc Society with the Whau River Catchment Trust. Just before the heavy showers, it was a perfect Sunday afternoon that fostered kids’ love of nature, arts and team spirit as they weeded and gathered mulch around 300 young plants.

Leaving a place better and cleaner is one of the values we wish our kids would have. After seeing the exhibit on littering concerns on Whau River at the Lynnmall last year, Pinay members in West Auckland together with URAGONZ (community group of Filipinos from the Bicol region of Philippines), thought of involving our own kids in responding to the call for community clean-up drive and holding a series of post-visit arts and crafts workshops on the theme ‘Whau River, We Care.’

Particularly for the Filipino families, after Haiyan we feel it’s important for our young ones to develop a sense of responsibility taking care of NZ environment, especially as we came from a country that has suffered cyclones and deadly consequences of decades of massive deforestation. We can’t thank New Zealanders enough for the massive support for Philippines’ catastrophic cyclone victims. One way we hope to give back to NZ by enjoining more Filipino-Kiwi families to take part in future environment-oriented projects.

Big thanks to Auckland Council Whau Local Board and NZ Lottery Grants Board for supporting our Whau River adventure which gathered families from West and around Auckland. Special thanks to the president and members of URAGONZ who joined us and prepared cupcakes forming the message ‘Whau River, We Care’ - served as special treat after the kids’ awesome job. Our next project is to organise a visit during the planting season hopefully with more kids from various ethnic communities.

Pinay Aotearoa Inc is a group established by Filipino women since February 2011 aiming to empower Filipino-Kiwi families and promote the Filipino bayanihan (cooperation) spirit to inspire, support and encourage each other in the face of challenges encountered while raising a family, working, studying and living in New Zealand. The group endeavours to strengthen community bonding through Kids Playgroup, Arts and Crafts activities while the mothers engage in Parenting Tips and Practical Family Help sessions.


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