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Programme To Activate Wellbeing In Christchurch’s CBD Is Back!

Moodshift is back! Gap Filler is at it again to brighten up otherwise ordinary days for inner-city workers.

Moodshift is a free pop-up event series happening every workday lunchtime during the second week of December (7th-11th), from midday to 2:00pm in Cashel Mall. It is a project by Gap Filler, with support from Christchurch City Council, and in association with All Right?.

Based on the "Five Ways to Wellbeing at Work", the event series aims to support positive wellbeing amongst inner-city workers – encouraging them to take a micro-pause, and offering an invitation to participate in something fun. Each event is unique with a different activation taking place each day, which adds to the excitement of the series being unpredictable, contagious and fun.

Photos: Rhiannon Josland

“This is the third Moodshift event series we’ve done,” Gap Filler Project Developer Elisha Blogg said. “The experience creates some out of the ordinary fun, leveraging off the temporary nature of a pop-up event to bring surprise and delight to inner-city workers during an otherwise stressful day in the leadup to the holidays.”

The December 2019 Moodshift event series included making free ice creams for a friend or stranger; a giant communal colouring-in; a ‘human music machine’; a popup meditation lawn; and a silent disco in Cashel Mall. It was attended by around 1200 people.

While some will be aware of the event series, and perhaps turn it into a social outing with their colleagues, others will be caught off-guard on their way back from a meeting, or as they grab lunch. The series utilises the playful element of surprise, and encourages curiosity.

The public are encouraged to follow Gap Filler on Facebook or Instagram for further clues in the lead-up to the events. They will be aware that there is a “pop-up” event happening, when and where it will take place, but won’t know exactly what it is until they come along during their lunch break. Each pop-up is designed to allow anyone to participate (at a range of levels of engagement and time), by just showing up. Each day’s activity will be different.

“2020 has been an interesting year for the majority of us and we want to help people end the year on a high. Working around the idea of the Five Ways to Wellbeing, we hope we can put a smile on some faces and help lift their mood,” Blogg said.

To develop the ideas for Moodshift 2020, Gap Filler created a working group that included wellness advocates from seven central Christchurch businesses’. The organisations swapped information about how they implement wellness initiatives within their organisations, and worked together to develop the creative ideas for this year’s Moodshift.

“I’m really delighted to be helping with Moodshift this year,” Paul Bonini, Westpac’s Christchurch Facilities Team Leader, said. “Watching the project transform from the brainstorming to the excitement of the event going live next week. The interaction with other CBD Businesses and energy of the concepts has made me an avid supporter of this project.”

Moodshift is an example of Gap Filler’s ongoing mission to design and create the conditions for experimental, playful and engaging encounters that connect people to place. The placemaking organisation turned 10 on November 25 and continues to undertake placemaking work around New Zealand and beyond. Recent examples include supporting the development of the Invercargill City Centre Master Plan; Innovating Streets for People projects funded by Waka Kotahi (NZTA) in Wellington, Tauranga and Invercargill; ongoing activation of central Christchurch’s One Central neighbourhood in partnership with Fletcher Living; and supporting the concept design team for Christchurch’s Performing Arts Precinct.

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