Courage and initiative Education Generosity

School becomes a broker for generosity

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Cash donations have enabled a small Porirua East school to order fresh food deliveries to those of their families facing extra challenges during the Covid-19 lockdown.

Glenview School principal Lynda Knight-de Blois says that while some families had received Whanau Ora food vouchers, several had no transport to reach the supermarket in the centre of Porirua to use them. Others had lost jobs or had small children so travelling to the supermarket was a challenge.

So the school ordered boxes of groceries from the charity, Eat My Lunch. These are now offered for home delivery.

After the lockdown was announced the school staff delivered food, games and books along with the Ministry of Education’s learning packs to its students.

The decile one school, which has about 100 students, is now in its second phase of the food deliveries.

Delivered by convoy

The school staff formed a convoy to deliver the hampers to all of their school families – numbering about 65.

Lynda put the call out on Facebook around the Wellington suburb where she lives and received an “overwhelming” response of Lego, games and books. People also offered food and cash.

The Lego, games and books were first given a clean. Fonterra milk and Kids Can food already at the school for its breakfast club, were included in the hampers.

Someone else’s generosity enabled Glenview School to make up food hampers for some of its families

Cash donations and food have also come from Wellington church communities such as St Andrew’s on the Terrace and Arise Church.

Volunteers from the Who Did You Help Today? group that runs a homework club at the school did deliveries until staff gained essential work status and could do the second phase of food deliveries themselves.

Broker for someone’s generosity

“We were just a broker for someone else’s generosity,” Lynda says.

Lynda says families have appreciated the food as well as the learning packs as many do not have home internet and depend on the packs and television school channel to do their lessons.

She says the lockdown has shone a spotlight on inequality in both income and digital access.

Going forward, a practical way some people could help low decile schools would be to donate their extra winter energy payment if they did not need it themselves, she says.

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Glenview School Porirua

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