Release: Rawhiti PTA
Comedian Ben Hurley Performing in Christchurch for School Pool Fundraiser.
An extraordinary new school building is currently under construction for Rāwhiti School (the 3 school merger in New Brighton) however the original 25-metre 1940s school pool is completely unheated and is leaking thousands of litres of water into the ground since the earthquake. To raise the additional funds to re-line the pool and add a water heating unit Rāwhiti PTA has managed to secure popular comedian Ben Hurley* (current star of 7 Days & 7 Days of Sport on TV3) as the headline act for a fundraising Comedy Night they are hosting on Saturday 7th November, at Roy Stokes Hall in New Brighton.
When Rāwhiti PTA was first formed, by parents and teachers of all three of the merging school communities, it was agreed that a major goal would be to support the Rāwhiti Board of Trustees to repair the old school pool next to the purpose built modern school that will be ready in term 1, 2016. The PTA is trying to raise over $20,000 for this purpose. The PTA’s first idea was to hold a parenting seminar or a talk about managing change but it was decided that what the community really needed was some light relief, and that alongside fundraising, some FUN-raising would occur too. As Steph Haskell, PTA Co-Chair states; “There are lot of people still affected by ongoing earthquake and insurance issues and recently we’ve been fighting the Council about the Coastal Hazards Zone, it’s all very wearying. What we need is a chance to get together and have a good laugh, and if it helps repair our pool, all the better.” Principal Liz Weir agrees, “Operating the school on two damaged sites this year has also been a challenge and there have been many times when it has been hard to find something to laugh about - so I think it is great that the PTA are looking to comedy to bring our new school community together.”
At the future site of Rāwhiti School on Leaver Terrace the school pool was left standing, built in the 1940s as the school pool for what was then North New Brighton school. Since that time the pool has been a major focal point for the local community and many people have fond memories of swimming in the 25 metre outdoor pool. Lynne Stewart, of Pegasus, currently has grand-children at Rawhiti School, and remembers the pool well. “I lived in Bower Ave and went to Freeville School but we biked or walked to the pool during the summer. We went on our own in those days! It was very well used and I hope it continues to be in the future.” The pool has continued to be a leisure attraction in the area as since the earthquake there have been no council pool facilities in the eastern suburbs and no replacement facility planned for the immediate future. It’s vital that all Kiwi kids learn water safety skills and the best place to do this is at the school pool, and this school pool needs repairs.
The Christchurch public are invited to come along to this fantastic 2 hour comedy show with Ben Hurley and others, to laugh their troubles away alongside the local school community, and to help to keep this great school pool going for the next generation.
Tickets are on sale now for $30 at rawhiticomedynight.eventbrite.co.nz. Or, if you cannot attend but would like to help fix this special pool, please donate on the Rāwhiti PTA’s Give a Little page at givealittle.co.nz/cause/extraordinaryschoolleakypool