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Rural Women's Postman pat-on-the-back Award winner

Media release
For immediate release

5 September 2012

Rural Women's Postman pat-on-the-back Award winner

Rural Women New Zealand is delighted to announce that Diane Howe of Hokitika has been chosen as the very deserving winner of its Postman pat-on-the-back Award, in a hotly contested competition.

Rural Women NZ national president, Liz Evans, says “Our rural delivery contractors are a special breed. In light of the changes facing our postal service we wanted to celebrate the exceptional service many of them deliver to their rural customers.

“They are often a lifeline for those who live a long way from town and many of them stay in the job for years, becoming part of the fabric of their rural community.

“Diane was one of several outstanding entries, and we offer her our warm congratulations.”

Diane was nominated by Anne van Beek and Di Strang, who say Diane fell into the role of postie, RD2 Hokitika, after her husband Bernie died following an accident delivering mail in the area. Diane didn’t want to let his customers down, so took on the run herself.
That was 12 years ago and she now travels 52,000 kilometres a year and has 499 clients.

Diane’s help has been legendary, says Anne van Beek. “It’s never a problem to deliver medicine, packages or whatever may have been urgently requested.”

Di Strang agrees. “She’s a character and has one of the most generous natures I have ever seen.” Diane gives gifts to new babies and their siblings and Easter treats all round.

Diane reports road problems to the council, along with suggested solutions. If children are seen waiting for the mail, Diane explains where they should wait so they are not in danger.

Anne says Diane’s been a godsend. “Reliable, affable and always ready to go the extra mile, to help out wherever she can.”

The 22 entries received in the Postman pat-on-the-back Award can all be found on the Rural Women NZ website


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