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New Horizons for NZ’s Only Music Therapy Centre

News Release
1 September 2009

New Horizons for NZ’s Only Music Therapy Centre

Five years after opening, the Raukatauri Music Therapy Centre now has a new home with improved facilities to meet a growing demand for its services.

New Zealand’s only music therapy centre, Raukatauri was formerly based in Auckland’s Newton but has grown out of the building.

The centre is now based in a bigger building in Grey Lynn that has been fitted to better facilitate music therapy sessions.

Raukatauri Music Therapy Centre Board Chairman Campbell Smith says the quality of the work the music therapists do is very high. He says they needed a bigger building to conduct their sessions to meet an increase in the number of children receiving music therapy.

“The therapists are so excited to have moved into a new beautiful building. A lot of people have put a lot of hard work in to getting the new premises right and we’re very grateful for that help,” Mr Smith says.

“It’s not always easy working with very high needs children in an environment that isn’t quite ideal, so it’s fantastic to move to a building where the quality of the space fits in with the quality of the centre’s work.”

Mr Smith says a $30,000 project with construction and relocation costs is a significant burden on any charity that receives no government funding. However he says it’s a cost that’s absolutely worth it in the long term.

The new centre is being officially opened on Thursday 3 September, 2009 at 4pm by the Minister for Disability Issues, the Honourable Tariana Turia.

It will be blessed by the Venerable Dr Hone Kaa.

There will be live music from singers Hollie Smith and Hinewehi Mohi.

What: Official opening of the new Raukatauri Music Therapy Centre
When: Thursday 3 September, 2009, 4pm
Where: 15 Surrey Crescent, Grey Lynn
RSVP: To dianna@peadpr.co.nz

About The Raukatauri Music Therapy Centre

The Centre provides music therapy for children of school age and younger. It is New Zealand’s first music therapy centre.

The idea grew from a Kiwi family’s experience of music therapy in the UK and, subsequently, the realisation there was a need to provide a similar service here.
Singer and songwriter Hinewehi Mohi, her husband George and daughter Hineraukatauri spent time at the Nordoff Robbins Music Therapy Centre in London in 1999.

Hineraukatauri has severe cerebral palsy. It was soon evident that therapy through music struck a chord for her. For the first time in her life, she had an opportunity to participate in and control an activity and to actually create something. Most important for Hineraukatauri, music became a means to communicate.

Upon their return to New Zealand, the family was determined to establish a music therapy centre here. The dream was realised with the opening in early 2004 of the Raukatauri Music Therapy Centre in Auckland.

Currently there are four registered music therapists, a director and a centre administrator. The work at the centre focuses primarily on children with special needs.
For more information, please visit www.rmtc.org.nz

ENDS

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