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Ted Manson The Quiet Philanthropist

Many people in NZ may have not heard of Ted Manson but quietly day by day he is changing the lives of many New Zealanders for the better.

In 1975 young Ted Manson aged 20 and father Colin purchased renovated and sold 2 houses in Grey Lynn. The following year 18 houses with their best year 12 years later, over 400 all over Auckland. This led to creating thousands more residential properties with the conversion of many old inner city commercial buildings, building new apartment buildings and upmarket homes plus building industrial buildings and large commercial buildings and building a multi-million dollar construction company.

Ted says "the secret to my success was my love of doing it, plus my absolute focus on doing what I had to do to be the best and not being distracted by anything else outside of family. It was 24/7. I’m still more than happy going to work".

Following on from a talk that I did at an Auckland school I received an invite from Ted Manson and his granddaughter to meet and discuss how they could help support my philanthropic work.

Like most New Zealanders I had no idea the breadth and scope of Teds philanthropic endeavours. It was only one day when I was delivering some of our healthy five star rated Amigo bars to a school in South Auckland that Ted had funded that I started to understand the scope of Ted Manson's generosity.When I drove into the schoolyard, I parked next to a school bus ,one of 30 school buses, that have been donated by Ted.

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As I left the school there was a huge Ted Manson social housing project across the road that provides healthy affordable housing to people in need but also thousands of jobs for construction workers and associated construction industry service providers.

On the way home I stopped at a roundabout to give way to St John ambulance and on the side of the ambulance it said "Donated by the Ted Manson Foundation".

More recently Ted has funded six community-based programs to support victims of family and sexual violence.

When I asked Ted what makes him happy, he said "Being with my family my sons and 5 granddaughters and 5 grandsons, that is my happy place.

At his heart Ted Manson is a family man of great mana.I love this photo of Ted with his smiling Granddaughter Zoe because that’s how Ted makes you feel and perhaps this is why it’s Teds vision is to deliver transformative change through education and learning, for children aged between 5 and 13, in high needs communities.

His Foundation supports school’s curriculums and teachers through the implementation of initiatives and programmes designed to remove personal and societal barriers to educational access and learning. These programmes include ensuring transport as no barrier to attendance at school, counselling support for emotional and mental wellbeing, technology, classroom resources, and enabling curriculum support for structured and digital literacy.

Ted’s achievements fly beneath the radar, but every day he touches the lives of so many New Zealanders and is a true inspiration.He is equally at home doing a multimillion deal, managing the day-to-day activities of his charity or taking his granddaughter from school.

Ted has a moral compass given to very few which is reflected in not only his ethical business dealings and his "hands on" philanthropic endeavours, but also with respect to being a great family man and mentor.

We are lucky to have inspirational leaders like Ted Manson who quietly exemplifies what it is to be a great Kiwi.Ted gives me hope for the future wellbeing of our people.

Ted and Zoe.

© Scoop Media

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