metropol » old » making a difference

Tag: making a difference

Can Do Catering

Catering with a purpose: Can Do Catering are the social enterprise business you need to hire to do your next work morning tea

Stefan Freuding’s passion for cuisine has taken him to kitchens around the globe. The 32-year-old chef has worked in Europe, Australia and the Middle East – but it’s a little kitchen in Christchurch that has captured his heart. He’s landed the perfect job that combines his flair for food and his love for helping others.

Can Do Catering
Stefan Freuding

Stefan is the head chef at the Laura Fergusson Trust Canterbury’s initiative, Can Do Catering. It’s a social enterprise business with a clear goal – to provide ordinary life opportunities for people with traumatic brain injuries and other physical disabilities.
The catering business was set up in 2015 by the Laura Fergusson Trust Canterbury with the aim to give its clients “ordinary life opportunities” and gain meaningful, paid employment. The organisation plays a leading role in providing traumatic brain injury rehabilitation in the South Island, and is dedicated to changing how we see and value people with brain injury and other disabilities.
Stefan, who is from Blaidhach, Germany, jumped at the chance to be part of the catering enterprise where he helps the employees create quality cuisine. “The residents are really inspiring, and it’s amazing to see them thrive and feel pride in their work,” Stefan says.
Seven disabled employees work alongside Stefan to prepare and deliver food for a variety of functions, morning teas and board meetings, for clients including the Christchurch City Council.
Stefan joined Can Do Catering in April 2018 as the Head Chef, bringing 16 years of global cuisine knowledge with him. He started his career in a small, traditional German restaurant, but it was the lure of travel that led him to jump continents, cooking in kitchens in Australia, Dubai and Bermuda.
“When you come from a small town in Germany, it is eye-opening to work in different parts of the world and such a great opportunity to work with top chefs,” he says.
Stefan, who also cooks for the less fortunate through Christchurch City Mission in his spare time, says he was ready for his day job to become more meaningful. He left the hotel industry after working for five years in New Zealand – and he knows he has found the perfect fit.
“At Can Do Catering I help residents to get back into the workforce and see them succeed. It’s inspiring to work with them every day,” Stefan explains.
“I had one resident who started off very shy, but after showing him a few recipes in the kitchen and getting him to help with chopping and peeling, he can’t wait to come back to work.
“It’s an amazing feeling to come to work every day knowing you’re making a difference in someone’s life.”
For more information, visit www.candocatering.co.nz or www.instagram.com/candocanterbury.

the Ministry of Awesome

An awesome enterprise: Q&A with the Ministry of Awesome’s Chief Awesome Officer Marian Johnson

A social enterprise established in the dark days post-quake to encourage positivity, collaboration, activation and support for a city that was struggling to survive, the Ministry of Awesome is a creative crew making some pretty cool moves.

the Ministry of Awesome

We talk to the organisation’s Chief Awesome Officer, Marian Johnson about the awesome work of this clever collaboration.

You’ve just celebrated six years in business, what is the organisation’s main role?

Ministry of Awesome is the starting point for entrepreneurs, innovators and startups. We deliver the essential ingredients necessary to ensure a thriving and dynamic entrepreneurial and innovation ecosystem.
We offer a Startup Activation Programme for any early stage entrepreneur or startup, which includes capability training, introductions to networks, and 100+ events every year that sustain our city’s influential and supportive innovation community. Last year, we saw more than 1,000 entrepreneurs come through our doors! We also operate AwesomeHQ – an inspiring co-working space at 192 St Asaph Street in the city centre.

How integral is it that we support entrepreneurs and start-ups here in Christchurch?

Entrepreneurs and innovators are key to Christchurch’s successful future as the ‘City of Opportunity’. And, for these change-makers, there is no better place to be than Christchurch whose ambition is to transform into a world leading city in its approach to sustainability, innovation and a collaborative economy.
By delivering the essential ingredients necessary for a flourishing startup and innovation ecosystem, we provide an environment that powers our fellow citizens forward to success. And, by creating this nurturing and dynamic environment, Christchurch will attract regional, national and international talent, all of whom will be part of this great future Christchurch – the City of Opportunity.

How did you first become involved?

I’d heard stories of Ministry of Awesome and had a vague understanding of the positive work it was doing but was light on detail until I was a founding member of Fluent Scientific, a tech startup from the Powerhouse Ventures stable. Ministry of Awesome played a crucial role in our early market validation process by opening up their powerful network, particularly in the area of tertiary education providers.
This early introduction allowed us to run successful pilot programmes that validated our product, customer and market. Without those initial introductions, it would have taken us 12 months or more to open those relationships and get traction. For a startup with a short runway, early and efficient market, customer and product validation are critical.
When the role of Chief Awesome Officer came up, I was already a convert of the organisation and could see the positive impact the organisation was having on the city’s nascent startup scene. I love Christchurch, I love our organisation’s mission, and I couldn’t be more grateful to our community, our supporters, and our trustees for allowing me to lead this mission.

What’s the most fulfilling aspect of what you do?

We are so lucky to see innovation first hand and to meet so many talented individuals every day. If the average citizen of Christchurch could see the innovation and sheer talent in our city, they would be equally inspired and so very excited to live here. We are telling these stories as loudly as we can alongside some incredible organisations like ChristchurchNZ, EPIC, Canterbury Tech, XCHC, The Chamber, Canterbury Angels, ARA, and UC’s Centre for Entrepreneurship.

philanthropic endeavours

Charity starts in the city: Metropol’s guide to some of the many amazing philanthropic endeavours to watch out for in the near future

We share our city with some incredible people who put heart, mind and soul into the support of philanthropic endeavours, so much so that we couldn’t possibly hope to list them all.

philanthropic endeavours

What we can do however, is list some of the upcoming events on the local social calendar which have been formed to support the vital charitable services that are at the heart of a strong community. We hope you enjoy.

A charitable exhibitionist
Ira Mitchell-Kirk’s My Heartland exhibition is a collection of landscapes which are dear to her heart, each having a significant meaning to her life journey, from the high country of Glenorchy and Queenstown where she grew up, to Christchurch which has been her home for the past 20 years. Aviva – Family Violence Services will be the recipient of a percentage of the profits from the show.

Exhibition opening 6 August
Pumanawa Gallery the Arts Centre
Email artbyira@outlook.com

Bachelor bidding
After searching high and low, PriMortal has discovered Christchurch’s best looking, well-versed and multi-talented men. Most importantly these men are single! They’ve put their boyish reservations aside for the good of a greater cause, raising money for the Base. How is PriMortal going to achieve this; by auctioning off dates with their bachelors to the highest bidders on the floor! Each bachelor is paired with a unique date package at a local café/restaurant.

Sunday 17 June
Halo Bar and Lounge
www.eventfinda.co.nz

The Bingo Babes
Christchurch Riding for the Disabled is fundraising for a new therapy pony, so ‘Ethel & Bethel Bingo Babes’ are hosting a Comedy night of bingo, raffles, auctions and games.
Invite your adult family and friends and join these babes for a night of fun and hilarity! There will be a bar running all night with supper provided for gold coin donation by Little Sister Café.
Tickets are only $20 – this includes one free bingo card. Please bring lots of extra cash for games, raffles and extra cards.

Saturday 23 June
Canterbury Caledonian Society
www.eventfinda.co.nz

A charitable read
The Community Focus Trust is holding its annual Bookarama fundraising event. For attendees, this means browsing the collection of books, jigsaws, games and more, with proceeds raising funds for the group’s community projects. A kids’ corner will keep littlies entertained while you browse, while the café will be serving food and hot drinks.

Friday 20 July to Saturday 21 July
Empower Church, 140 Springfield Road
Contact Mark 027 9157789 or email
mark@emowerchurch.co.nz

A famine fundraiser
Cashmere students are playing host to some family fun, in aid of helping South Sudanese refugees stranded in camps in Uganda! The World Vision 40 Hour Famine fair will feature a bouncy castle, face-painting, food stalls, games, a prize wheel, second hand stalls and much, much more. The Humanity Council of Cashmere High School’s goal is to raise $10,000 for South Sudanese refugees.

Saturday 9 June
Cashmere High School,
172 Rose Street

Maree Lucas

A fashionable crusade: Q&A with Maree Lucas of M Factor Events

Maree Lucas brought tears to the eyes of some of the biggest fashion followers last month at one of the city’s most covetable fashion shows of the year. Supporting a cause very close to her heart, the Ronald McDonald House (RMH) Fashion Show is her annual contribution to a charitable cause which has done so much for her own family.

Maree Lucas
Maree Lucas

Born prematurely, one with a hole in her heart, Maree’s twin nieces spent time at Starship, with the family staying at RMH during their treatment. Metropol talks to the school principal and owner of M Factor Events about this very worthy cause.

How did you become involved with RMH?

A friend was organising a fashion show for Ronald McDonald House about 14 years ago and I was modelling in it. I gave her a hand on the day with the organising and met the team from RMH and realised what a special charity it was. I was already organising events, so this then became one of my annual events and we used it to raise money for RMH. It is such a fun event and relates well with the RMH charity as there are so many children involved and it’s about gorgeous fashion, but also has different aspects to a normal fashion show – the All Blacks/Crusaders always add some character and the amount of children involved makes it a really lively event.

How fulfilling is it to be able to give back to an organisation which has given so much to your own family?

It definitely is a special place. The fact my family have stayed there and used Ronald McDonald House makes the event even more special for me. It’s lovely to be able to give back to a place that gives so much each and every day.

How much time goes into planning and preparation for an event such as this?

We have started working on next year’s show already, so a lot of thought and preparation goes into it. It definitely becomes easier each year as we build our sponsors and supporters. Generally once someone has come along to the event, they want to give back in some way the following year, whether through sponsorship, donating auction/raffle items, modelling, volunteering or just spreading the word about ticket sales. As I am a full time primary school principal, it is something I do in my spare time. Generally I use the January school holidays to get a lot of it organised, plus I always have my school involved. It’s a great way for the children to learn how to give back and pay it forward.

How successful was this year’s event compared to previous years?

I was really happy with this year’s event. There was such a positive and energetic vibe in the audience; the models looked great and have so much fun on the catwalk showcasing the gorgeous clothes and the most important thing to me is to raise awareness of this amazing charity. On top of that, we managed to raise over $60,000 for RMH.

Dr Sue Bagshaw

Champion of city’s youth: Interview with Dr Sue Bagshaw

The physical scars of the Canterbury quakes are almost fully healed. But below the surface, the mental scars remain.

Dr Sue Bagshaw

In line with international research showing the long term mental health effects of natural disasters, demand for mental health, addiction and domestic violence services has skyrocketed in Canterbury post-quake. As demand for child and youth mental health services soars, it can take months for specialist treatment for some of the most severe mental health problems.
From her first ever job in student health at the university, to her involvement with Family Planning and the Methadone Programme, Dr Sue Bagshaw has been heavily invested in improving youth outcomes. “In those roles we came across a lot of young people that were in boxes,” she says.
“So we asked young people what they wanted and that was the birth of the Youth One Stop Shop.”
Designed to increase accessibility for youth, the One Stop Shop concept brought together medical, physical, sexual, mental and even social health services under one roof, with Christchurch’s 198 Youth Health Centre one of the first of its kind.
“Individually we can only provide so much with a small budget,” Dr Bagshaw says.
“We thought why not work together with other organisations. By bringing them all together we can be a lot more efficient and more effective.”
After providing free health services to young people for 15 years, lack of funding forced its closure in 2010. But Dr Bagshaw was determined to bring these integral services back to the city and, in 2012, she and Peter Young from Action Works brought 16 youth organisations together to form the first youth hub in Barbadoes Street.
Despite unprecedented need for these collective services over the past three years, the individual need for bigger, better spaces has seen the organisations disperse and Dr Bagshaw has been on a tireless crusade since 2015 to develop a purpose-built hub to bring them all back together.
The Anglican Church’s social service agency has stepped in to help, purchasing the old Salisbury Street bowling club site last year for $4 million. Now Dr Bagshaw is focused on raising the $10 million to make it happen.
Co-designed by youth, for youth, the most important feature will be transitional accommodation for young people to stay for 3-18 months while they find work. “While they’re there, they will have access to all the services around them they need for support,” Dr Bagshaw says.
Youth workers will be in residence overnight, there will be a drop in centre, spaces to provide activities such as art, music and acting, outdoor ball courts and on site services including legal aid. Importantly, a social enterprise hub will support young people with good ideas but lack of opportunity, to become social entrepreneurs.
“We’re living in a generation that is all about ‘me’. It’s become more about competition and less about community. We’ve all had enough of that. The poverty gap has got bigger. We know we need a new story,” Dr Bagshaw says.
“This is about doing things together. People working in silo doesn’t help our young people. This is about cooperation, not competition.”

For more information, visit www.youthhubchch.org.nz

Nurse Maude Hospice Shops

Winter demand for hospice shops: Nurse Maude Hospice Shops wants your last season warm winter clothing

With winter nearly upon us, the city’s Nurse Maude Hospice Shops are desperately short of warm jackets, tops and jerseys in good condition.

Nurse Maude Hospice Shops

“Every jacket, jersey, pair of boots or winter top donated is directly supporting the Nurse Maude Hospice,” says Sue Bramwell, Nurse Maude’s General Manager Marketing.
“And with good quality winter clothing selling almost as fast as it comes in, we’re in dire need of good quality winter clothing, particularly women’s tops and jackets and larger sized women’s clothing.”
Sue says it’s important people don’t think it’s not worth dropping off just one or two items. “Each and every one of them will find loving homes and buy valuable nursing
hours in the Nurse Maude Hospice,” she says.
Running alongside the Hospice Shops is Maudes on Trade Me, which also supports the Nurse Maude Hospice. While the Hospice Shops concentrate on fashion retail, Maudes on Trade Me sells everything from antiques, jewellery and silverware, to sporting and household items, open 24 hours a day, seven days a week.
Every week more than 250 items are listed for auction, so it is totally dependent on a steady stream of donated goods from the community.
While smaller pieces can be left for Maudes on Trade Me at any of the Nurse Maude Hospice Shops, it is sometimes possible for larger or bulk items to be
picked up.

The charitable social calendar

The charitable social calendar: local events with a community or charitable trust

We share our city with some incredible people who put heart, mind and soul into the support of philanthropic endeavours, so much so that we couldn’t possibly hope to list them all.

The charitable social calendar

What we can do however, is list some of the upcoming events on the local social calendar which have been formed to support the vital charitable services that are at the heart of a strong community. We hope you enjoy.

Battle of the artists

Art Battle is live, competitive painting where 12 of Christchurch’s top artists have just 20 minutes to paint a canvas. The audience votes for the winner and all artworks are available by silent auction on the night.
But what is perhaps the most exciting aspect of this endeavour, is that it supports the charity ‘Just Peoples’ which was set up to connect Kiwis with the means and desire to join the fight against global poverty with small, locally led micro-projects across Asia and Africa.
Sunday 6 May from 5:30-9:30pm
Sixty6 on the corner Peterborough and Durham Streets
For tickets visit www.eventbrite.co.nz

Philanthropic fare

It’s an iconic mystery dining experience and it’s all in support of Ronald McDonald House. Arrive with your guests at the pre-dinner function and enjoy a glass of champagne and canapes. This is where excitement builds with a live auction, before you find out where you will be dining for the night with a live mystery dining draw.
From exclusive local restaurants to private chefs at unique dining destinations, Supper Club Christchurch is sure to impress your dinner guests.
Friday 15 June from 5:30pm until late
Pre-dinner location to be revealed soon, mystery dinner location announced on the night
For bookings contact Robyn Medlicott on 027 225 5221 or robyn@rmhsi.org.nz

A charitable cook

Life Education Trust Canterbury is very lucky to have the opportunity to host a fundraising event alongside Annabel Langbein.
Ticket proceeds will go directly to Life Education Trust Canterbury, enabling this talented team to continue delivering health educational lessons to 20,000 primary and intermediate school children in Canterbury each year.
During this exclusive event the second volume Essentials cookbook will be launched and Annabel will share stories from her free-range life as well as top tips and tricks to help you become a more confident and creative cook.
Monday 7 May from 6:30-8:30pm
St Margaret’s College, Charles Luney Auditorium
Tickets are available on www.eventfinda.co.nz

Wham Bam Author Jam

We have a lot of talented authors in this beautiful country of ours, and Addington Raceway wanted to create a place for the public to meet them and perhaps find their next favourite!
The event will feature local authors and even some from further afield, with ticket and raffle proceeds supporting the Mental Health Foundation of New Zealand. So, grab the family, grab your friends and head to Wham Bam Author Jam!
Saturday 24 November, 10am-4pm
Addington Raceway 75 Jack Hinton Drive, Addington
Tickets are available on www.eventfinda.co.nz

Metropol Editor Melinda Collins

Editor’s Perspective: on getting teary-eyed at the M Factor Events for Ronald McDonald fashion show

Tears may not be what you’d expect from one of the city’s most covetable fashion shows. But when the benefactor of the event is a worthy charitable cause such as Ronald McDonald House South Island, which has supported the likes of Paula and Alex Moore, it’s not surprising there wasn’t a dry eye in the room.

Metropol Editor Melinda Collins
Metropol Editor Melinda Collins

When their daughter Grace was diagnosed with an inoperable brain tumour, the Moore family – including Grace’s twin sister Sophie and younger brother Beau – spent 133 nights at Ronald McDonald House.
The annual M Factor Fashion Show is one of the organisation’s primary fundraising drives each year, which enables it to continue the tireless crusade to support families when they need it the most. More than $65,000 was raised for the charity on the night at this year’s event.
It’s an event that organiser Maree Lucas from M Factor Events puts heart and soul into. She was joined on stage for the opening address by her twin nieces. Born prematurely, one with a hole in her heart, they spent time at Starship and her family stayed at Ronald McDonald House to be close to them while they underwent treatment.
It was a special night for a special cause and Metropol would like to personally thank all of the incredible people that supported this event in some way, shape or form.
We look at the charity’s next major fundraiser on page 10. Enjoy.

Mike King

Mike King’s mission: this funny family man has tasked himself with making a serious difference to New Zealand’s youth

Popular New Zealand personality Mike King may have made his name as a comedian, but these day’s you’ll find him delivering a much more serious message. He’s been heading up and down the country – a 4000km journey – on a 50cc scooter for the past five years, addressing youth suicide. We talk to the mental health advocate about his personal mission for this very worthy cause.

Mike King

How big is the youth suicide issue in New Zealand?

How long is a piece of string? The issue of suicide across the board is big and how we’re dealing with it needs addressing. Currently those in crisis have to ring ‘this number’ or see ‘this person’. Everything is aimed at the person in crisis; nothing is aimed at the 65/70 percent of the population who have no problems.
People hold onto problems for so long and they’re only being referred when they’re at critical point. We’re trying to promote the fact that it’s ok to talk about small problems before they become big ones and someone becomes suicidal.

You’ve been making your way around the country on 50cc Suzukis to raise awareness, why is it such an important issue for you to tackle?

In February 2013 I spoke at a small rural school in Northland which had lost five children to suicide. I have discovered through this experience that our young people don’t feel like us old people are listening to them.
So we went around schools listening, listening, listening. We discovered that all kids, regardless of religion or colour, have the same problems and they’re not talking about them; they’re holding onto them until they become overwhelming.
Their inner critics, the little voice second guessing all their decisions, are huge. From there we worked out a strategy – help the inner critic; he’s the cornerstone of 9 out of 10 of the mental health problems. We need to normalise the inner critics by changing society’s attitudes.
Last year we discovered that of those who will have a major mental health problem, 80 percent won’t ask for help. They don’t feel safe. The simplest thing we could do is come up with a signifier of someone safe. We created a simple wristband with ‘I am hope’ on it. This says: I won’t judge, shame, gossip, ask stupid questions, try and fix everything for you; all you’ll get from me is unconditional love and hope, but most importantly, if you want to talk to someone, I am here.

What are some of the key ways New Zealand can start to make some ground in this area?

Parents need to know that all kids are born perfect. The only thing that can screw them up is us. We apply all these rules and only give conditional love – if you do this or that, pass this test, then I’ll love you. We can understand the logic of that, because we’re adults, but kids are thinking there must be something wrong with them if they’re not getting unconditional love.
If there’s five things they do, four are good and one is bad, we focus on the bad, what we think we’re saying is ‘we love you, but you can do better’, but what our kids are getting is ‘no matter what I do I can never be good enough’. How we’re speaking to our children becomes an inner voice.
These become little criticisms that mean nothing in isolation, ‘yes you’re an idiot I asked for a screwdriver you bought be a spoon’. But that’s one hell of an inner critic we’re planting in our kids’ heads.

How does it feel to be in a position where you can play such a positive role in raising awareness of issues such as this?

It’s a privileged position. We have to be very responsible; people are placing a lot of trust on our shoulders. We don’t take or accept government funding; we’re funded by the public of New Zealand. A lot of organisations out there take government money and public money. That’s like having a wife and girlfriend; you have to lie to please both. We only take public donations and apply for grants, so the public will let us know when we’re out of a job; it keeps you honest. It’s a cool position to be in.

American Express Openair Cinema

Events guide: Five things well worth leaving home for

The temperatures may have begun their downward descent, but that doesn’t mean it’s time to lock yourselves inside! We’ve gone in search of some of the hottest events around that will be sure to bring some warmth to your autumn.

American Express Openair Cinema
American Express Openair Cinema

Food, fun and flicks:

American Express is bringing the Openair Cinema festival of food, fun and flicks to Rauora Park from 15 March to 1 April.
There will be an array of alternative entertainment, live music and DJ performances before the latest and greatest feature films light up the big screen.
Better yet, you can bring along a ‘Doggy Date’! Pampered pooches will receive the VID treatment with a pawfect picnic platter of doggy delights and their own canine couch. Tickets start at $13 and are on-sale now at www.openaircinemas.co.nz.

Jump for charity:

Some of the country’s leading horse and pony riders are getting in behind the New Zealand Breast Cancer Foundation with the second annual Jump for Cancer Hagley charity event at North Hagley Park on 25 March.
St. Margaret’s College students will be collecting donations on behalf of the New Zealand Breast Cancer Foundation and food vendors will be selling everything from coffee and gelato to gourmet pizzas and potatoes.
General admission is free with VIP tickets available from www.eventbrite.co.nz. To find out more, head to the Jump for Cancer Hagley Facebook page.

Middle-aged man in lycra!

Following a sell-out premiere season across New Zealand, much-loved Kiwi actor Mark Hadlow remounts for a final ride into Christchurch in the acclaimed one man show, MAMIL (middle-aged man in Lycra), in all its lurid lycra glory for ‘Le Tour d’Isaac’, from Thursday 31 May to Saturday 2 June at the Isaac Theatre Royal.
Shining as the affable, yet uncomfortably relatable anti-hero in the one-man show, Hadlow commands the stage. With his energetic presence and childlike enthusiasm to the character, he breathes life into the cleverly crafted monologues to delight even the most stoic of MAMIL-phobes.

Colourful fun :

All the colour and fun of a carnival is coming to Cathedral Square on Saturday 24 February.
The popular Latino market is heading into the city from 4pm to 8pm on so you can enjoy a delicious culinary collection of Latin street food, live music, art and craft and, of course, the warmth of the local Latin community.
There will also be workshops, a dance floor and performances with Latin rhythms (including capoeira and samba do Brasil). So bring your most colourful clothing – and your dancing shoes – and prepare for a night of colourful fun.

A catwalk crusade:

Designers and celebrities are set to hit the catwalk on Thursday 12 April wearing the latest New Zealand fashion.
Guests at the annual M Factor Fashion Show will see collections from the likes of Annah Stretton, Augustine, Repertoire, Trelise Cooper and many more to raise funds for Ronald McDonald House Charities New Zealand and Ronald McDonald House South Island.
Held at 7pm on Thursday 12 April at The Transitional Cathedral, tickets are available at ticketmaster.co.nz and are priced at $75 for VIP, $55 for General Admission and $20 for children and students.