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Charity receives funds from award winning student volunteer

Media Release, for immediate release, Tuesday 23 August

Royal New Zealand Foundation of the Blind receives funds from award winning student volunteer

The Royal New Zealand Foundation of the Blind has received a $250 donation from the winner of the TrustPower Waihemo Youth Community Spirit Award.

Megan Turner from East Otago High School was named as winner of the Award, which recognises secondary school students' service to the school and the community. The Award is jointly run by TrustPower and the Waitaki Council and is part of the TrustPower Waihemo Community Awards.

For winning the Award Megan received a framed certificate and $500, with $250 going to Megan personally and $250 being donated by Megan to the Royal New Zealand Foundation of the Blind's (RNZFB) Guide Dog Services. RNZFB Head of Supporter Relationships Deb Ward is delighted with Megan's generous support at such a young age, and says the donation will go to a very worthy purpose.

"The guide dog journey is an involved one that starts even before a puppy is born, with our Guide Dog Services breeding program.

"To become a guide dog, puppies train for two years and go through a rigorous testing process to ensure they're able to safely guide a blind or partially sighted person. From the time they're puppies to when they retire at eight to ten years, guide dogs require ongoing support, and with no Government funding for Guide Dog Services we rely on public generosity," she says.

TrustPower Community Relations Representative Jess Somerville says the TrustPower Youth Community Spirit Award is a wonderful opportunity to publicly acknowledge the work young people do to enrich their community. "Megan is heavily involved in her school and community and through her captaincy, coaching, and community work it's not hard to see why Megan has won this Award.

Megan charges a variety of Community projects and fundraisers as chairperson on the student council. Currently you can find her organising a school social to raise funds for a new school van. This is a great example of Megan's generosity as although her year will receive little benefit from this fundraising she pursues this effort regardless.

Megan was keen to give her share of the Award to the Guide Dogs Services as she is very passionate about Animals," says Miss Somerville.

Suitably, Megan will be studying Applied Science at a Polytechnic in Otago next year.


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