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Organisations working together to build stronger communities

8 July 2014

Organisations working together to build stronger communities

Community organisations will come face to face with influential business leaders in a bid to raise awareness around current social issues within the Waikato at an exclusive function this month.

The Network for Community Hospitality, in conjunction with the Waikato Management School, will host ‘Town and Gown: Advocating the Social Issues through the Network for Community Hospitality’, a dinner for local business leaders and corporate guests, as well as University of Waikato staff, on Thursday 24 July in the Gallagher Academy of Performing Arts.

The purpose of the event is to encourage community and academic engagement around current social issues such as, disability, accessibility, health, social housing, poverty and the causes of these, as well as to raise the profile of the Network for Community Hospitality.

The Network was founded by Professor Alison McIntosh and Dr Cheryl Cockburn-Wootten from the University of Waikato’s Management School and includes volunteer, charitable and not-for-profit organisations such as, Royal New Zealand Foundation for the Blind, HMS Trust, Habitat for Humanity, Be Accessible and Eplisey Waikato Charitable Trust, who are working together to share resources, knowledge and support each other around Waikato social issues. The Network also includes academics who support the different activities and needs of the community organisations by way of funding, promotion, shared learning and training resources.

On the evening, a spokesperson from each organisation involved in the network will give a short presentation to those in attendance. Invited guests include, Deputy Mayor Gordon Chesterman, Sir John Gallagher, Dame Malvina Major and Waikato University’s Deputy Vice Chancellor, Professor Alister Jones.

“These people play a key role in the management and decision-making of our community sectors, from politics and education to health and recreation, therefore it is a prime opportunity for the Network to voice issues which are currently impacting on our community,” says Dr Cockburn-Wootten.

“We are hoping that by holding this event, we can make a difference and start to think and change local issues,” she adds.

Associate Professor John Tressler, Acting Dean of the Waikato Management School, is proud to be supporting the event.

"Sustainability has been a core value of the Waikato Management School for over a decade. Social responsibility is central to this value. This event provides an opportunity for community organisations to highlight their contributions to the creation of a better society. The School is privileged to be associated with this event and, through the Network, the work of these organisations,” he says.

To find out more about the ‘Town and Gown’ function, please contact: Dr Cheryl Cockburn-Wootten at For more information about the Network for Community Hospitality visit the website here or the Facebook page here.


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