With one loaf of bread ...
TRADING one loaf of bread for a house sounds impossible.
But that is exactly what a classroom of children at Grey Lynn School wants to do.
The kids kicked off the With One Loaf project three weeks ago – hoping they’d end up with a house to provide to a deserving family.
The aim was to start with one single loaf of bread and keep trading for items with more value until they reached their goal.
Four trades on and they’re sitting pretty with a brand new toilet, two designer cushions and two premium cinema seats from a movie theatre in Auckland.
Now the students are looking to make their next barter.
Teacher Grant O’Connor says driving to work, seeing people living it rough on the streets and hearing about peoples’ housing struggles pushed him to do more.
‘‘In New Zealand it is so hard for anyone to get a house let alone people who don’t earn two full incomes – they could be solo parents, on a sickness benefit or holding down multiple low income jobs – for them a house can be impossible.’’
‘‘So I said: ‘Let’s step out and tackle this. Let’s give them the impossible’.’’
O’Connor says he wants the children to see the project through, no matter how long it takes.
Student Ethan Hall, 9, says the class has been stirred by the potential reach of the project.
‘‘We know it can be done because a guy in America started with a red paper clip and 14 trades later he ended up with a house,’’ he says.
‘‘We might be young but if we can do something like this then everyone can and that way everyone would end up with a house.’’
Ethan says taking on a mammoth task isn’t the daunting part.
‘‘If we fail it would show how selfish the world we live in is so I really hope that doesn’t happen.
‘‘That would be a disappointment. I want to believe people will support us.’’
Emily Allan, 8, says a car would be a great item for their next up-trade.
‘‘It doesn’t matter if we get a house, or an apartment, or a motel as long as someone can live in it,’’ she says.
‘‘We just want to help someone in desperate need.’’
The students traded the loaf of bread for two DVDs, then the DVDs for eight Nintendo Wii games.
They were also donated a Wii console and then swapped the Wii bundle for a brand new toilet.
Trade up: Grey Lynn School students Ethan Hall, Ruby Honore, Emily Allan and Koen Dettling are ready to trade a toilet as part of their classroom project, With One Loaf. The class want to continue to trade items until they can secure a house for a deserving family.