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Canterbury - the Pathway to Prosperity

Canterbury - the Pathway to Prosperity

Four “new” Cantabrians who are set to play a leading roll in the next few years in our region, will share their views with the business community and interested media on Wednesday 27th August.

The University of Canterbury’s new Vice Chancellor, Professor Roy Sharp, Lyttleton Port Company’s new CEO, Peter Davie, the new CEO of Christchurch City Council, Dr. Lesley McTurk and the new man at the helm of Environment Canterbury, Dr. Bryan Jenkins, have all agreed to share their views on the future of our region, to raise funds for one of Canterbury’s most worthy charities, The Family Help Trust.

The Trust that provides services for children in very high-risk families, suffers from general funding shortages in the social services area. “People don’t always think that the well-being of our children is absolutely crucial in creating a prosperous society,” says the Trust’s chairperson, Sally Thompson. “Prosperity for a community is not only based on economic success, but also on how such a community is governed, its educational resources, how we look after our environment, and most of all, how we prepare our children for the future,” she says.

University of Canterbury Vice chancellor, Professor Roy Sharp agrees: “I am very conscious that young people are our nation’s future and that our role is to help students become the best people they can. For that to happen children need the opportunity to fulfill their potential, which in turn requires a safe and supportive home life.” Professor Sharp says he commends the work of the Family Help Trust in helping families to develop the skills they need to improve their lives.

Dr. Lesley McTurk, who took over the position as City Council CEO at the beginning of July, is excited about the region’s future. She says Christchurch has a robust infrastructure and is in sound financial health, so there is wide scope for the City Council to add real value and enhance people's lives. She says: “The city’s children and young people are an important part of our city’s future. They are the reason our commitment to sustainability is so critical. The City Council is committed to helping make sure Christchurch continues to be a great place to live over the next year, and in the years to come.”

As a mother and soon-to-be grandmother, Dr. McTurk is very aware that we are only guests in our world, and that we must leave it a better place when we depart, for those still to come.

“The Council’s role is to work with other agencies and with groups like the Family Help Trust to create a sustainable environment that results in citizens who look forward to a good future in a city that is prosperous,” Dr. McTurk says.

Her sentiments are echoed, also by Environment Canterbury’s new CEO, Bryan Jenkins, who says: “ Investment in our children and the environment in which they will live, is the appropriate way to manage the region’s long term future.”

Lyttleton Port Company’s new CEO also places a high premium on children as the architects of a prosperous future. “No community can prosper if we do not plant the seeds of success in our children,” says Mr. Davie.

Mr. Davie, Professor Sharp, Dr. McTurk and Dr. Jenkins, together with many of the city’s business leaders, will all be present at a fundraising dinner for the Family Help Trust on August 27 in The Grand Café at Christchurch Casino. Peter Townsend from the Canterbury Employment Chamber of Commerce, will be the MC for the evening and deputy mayor Lesley Keast will deliver the closing remarks.

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