2011-02-28

Young Farmers calling for volunteers to help with quake cleanup

Young Farmers called upon to help with quake clean up



Just one of the mammoth tasks following the February 22nd Earthquake in Canterbury is to remove huge amounts of silt and sand from private properties. The Christchurch City Council has set the goal to have all private homes cleared of mess from liquefaction by the end of the week.



New Zealand Young Farmers is calling on its extensive network of past and present members to help reach this goal, aid in the clean-up and bring a little hope to the residents of Christchurch. Volunteers are being asked to donate their time on Wednesday March 2nd and Thursday March 3rd.



NZYF member Lisa Chapman is helping to coordinate the Federated Farmers led relief effort and says that more volunteers are needed.



“There are a lot of people out there that want to help but don’t necessarily know the best way to go about it. Come to the A&P grounds, sign up and we’ll point you in the right direction. It’s really rewarding and good to know that you’re making a difference in people’s lives following a very traumatic experience.”



Volunteers are asked to call NZYF National Office to advise of their desire to help and then register at the Canterbury A&P Showgrounds any day this week by 10am, with a focus on Wednesday and Thursday for major clean-up days. For those wishing to stay at the Showgrounds, a tent and sleeping bag is needed, food will be provided but volunteers should bring as much drinking water as possible.



Volunteers are also being asked to bring shovels and strong wheelbarrows; small tractors and diggers are also needed.



Pendarves Club chair Matt Whiteman has been helping out with the relief effort too. Matt doesn’t know anyone badly affected by the quake but just wanted to help the people of Christchurch.



“I’ve got a bit of spare time and saw how bad it was on the TV and thought I should just do my bit to help.”



“People are just so stoked to have us there, they can’t quite believe that people from all walks of life have just come together to help – they’re just overwhelmed by the support.”



“Some of these areas are pretty devastated and it’s a big task ahead of us so we can always do with more help. If you’re able to give a day or two of your time; get in touch with NZYF and make a difference.”



For those who might be unable to assist with the physical labour but still want to help; Selwyn District Council also needs volunteers to accompany building inspectors as welfare officers. Every house in East Christchurch needs to be visited and the welfare officer's role is to check on how people are doing for at least the next two weeks.



For more information:

Lisa Sutton,

NZYF Coordinator

03 303 3059

0800 NZYF INFO

lisa.sutton@youngfarmers.co.nz

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