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Meridian Energy Supports Its Communities

Meridian Energy Supports Its Communities

More than 70 lower South Island community groups benefited from Meridian Energy’s community support programmes in the last financial year.

Since Meridian Energy was formed on 1 April 1999, the state owned enterprise has supported hundreds of community activities through its sponsorship programme. A full-time Meridian Energy staff member works with the Mackenzie, Waitaki Valley and Southland communities around its power stations and hydro schemes to implement the programme.

“These communities are our stakeholders. They have a ‘stake’ in our business activities and what we do affects them. Our community sponsorship programme is our way of giving back to the community some of the support they give us,” says Meridian Energy spokesperson Alan Seay. “One of the most recent examples is the Waimate Strawberry Fare (13 December 2003) of which Meridian was the major sponsor. It was attended by more than 10 000 people and was great for the local community.”

Meridian Energy saw the Waimate Strawberry Fare as an opportunity to replace the former ECNZ sponsorship of the Waimate 50 - a car race around the streets of Waimate.

Through its community programme, Meridian Energy provides one-off donations to events or groups. It also provides regular sponsorships of various activities – from conservation awards to science fairs to search and rescue teams.

Alan Seay says Meridian’s support is not just financial. “We believe in empowering local communities, so as well as financial help we also provide these community groups with any specialist support they need, such as advice and help in the logistics of planning an event, marketing and advertising.”

One of Meridian Energy’s new community initiatives this year was its sponsorship of the Fiordland Cleanup Campaign, which involved a one-week cleanup of the coastal shoreline to remove 200 cubic metres of waste. The campaign generated national coverage and raised public awareness as it assisted in maintaining and beautifying some of New Zealand’s most notable shorelines.

Alan Seay says Meridian Energy will continue to provide its community support programme in all areas affected by its generation activities.

“It’s an important part of who we are, as a company,” says Alan Seay.

Meridian Energy also has an active national sponsorship programme. In March this year it announced the renewal of its principal sponsorship of the Royal New Zealand Ballet for another three years. It also sponsors the New Zealand String Quartet, the Wellington Sculpture Trust’s Meridian Energy Wind Sculpture Project and the Katherine Mansfield Memorial Fellowship.

Meridian Energy won a special merit award in the National Business Review 2003 Awards for Sponsorship of the Arts, with the NBR commenting that “the sheer breadth of Meridian’s sponsorship of the arts is breathtaking”.

This year Meridian Energy added Diving New Zealand to its portfolio of support for sports, which includes South Island Rowing, Canterbury Rugby and talented individual sportspeople. Also this year, Meridian Energy donated $650,000 to the Plunket Society to reward New Zealanders for energy saving efforts during the Target 10 campaign.

“Our active sponsorship programmes, both national and local, enables us to build relationships with a diverse range of organisations, individuals and communities,” says Alan Seay. For further information contact Alan Seay Principal, Communications & External Relations Ph (04) 381-1243 or (021) 494-475

In the financial year to June 2003, Meridian Energy supported the following lower South Island communities: Omarama Hockey Club - July 2003 Mackenzie Science Fair - July 2003 Gutbuster Mountain Bike Event - July 2003 Department of Conservation - Conservation Awards July 2003 Lake Tekapo Moutain Bike Pursuit - June 2003 Mel the Search & Rescue Dog - June 2003
Twizel Half Marathon - June 2003
Lake Tekapo Freezin Winter Frolics - June 2003
Omarama Ball - May 2003
Search & Rescue Bridge, Te Anau - May 2003 Deep Cove Outdoor Education Trust - May 2003
Fiordland Clean Up - May 2003
Te Anau Flower Show - March 2003 DOC Braided River Guides - March 2003 Fairlie Golf Club - March 2003 Rescue Bridge for Te Anau - March 2003 Twizel Tennis Nets - February 2003 Waitangi Day Charity Golf Tournament - February 2003
Te Anau Childcare Centre - January 2003 Air Fiordland Harness Racing - January 2003
Omarama Soaring Club - January 2003
Wings Over Water - January 2003
Broom Busters - January 2003
Te Anau 'Locals vs Campers Cricket Match' - December 2002
Lions Club Magic Show - December 2002
Meridian Energy Education Scholarships - December 2002 Twizel Promotions & Development ASSN - November 2002
Sunhats for Omarama School - November 2002
Rescue Boat for Te Anau Scout Group - November 2002
Te Anau Fishing Competition - October 2002
Burkes Pass Heritage Trust - October 2002
Twizel entry into World Fire Fighting Games - September 2002
Fish & Game 'Angler Access' brochures - September 2002
Totara Peaks Gut Buster Mountainbike Race - September 2002
Manapouri H & S Poster Competition - September 2002
Boat Safety Evening - September 2002
'MEL', the Meridian Search & Rescue Dog - August 2002
Otematata Voluntary Visitor Centre - August 2002
Manapouri Play Group Preschool Gym - July 2002
Omarama Ball - July 2002
Freez'in Winter Frolics Week - July 2002
Twizel Rowing Club - July 2002
Fiordland College Secondary Girls Hockey Team - July 2002
Kurow Bugle - July 2002
Donations Kurow Speed Shear Competition - July 2003 Kurow 27 Hole Golf Competition - July 2003 Tekapo White Water Trust - July 2003 Murals on Waitaki Toilets - July 2003 North Otago Rep Hockey Trip - July 2003 North Otago Junior Football Association - July 2003 Duntroon School Reunion - July 2003 Riverton Coastguard Fishing Competition - June 2003 Educational Cartoons for School Books - June 2003 Fairlie Golf Club - June 2003 Kurow Rugby Football Club - May 2003 Kurow Bowling Club - March 2003 Twizel Climbing Wall - March 2003 Twizel Kindy Watercooler - March 2002 Otematata Televiewers Society - October 2001 Twizel Volunteer Fire Brigade - May 2001 Twizel Kindy Socks & Gumboots - August 2001 Omarama Volunteer Fire Brigade - August 2001 Duntroon Hall Refurbishment - February 2001

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