Mini house just the start

Auckland City Harbour News - - NEWS - By ROSE CAW­LEY

IT HAS a roof and four walls but this sleep­out is a smidgen too small for an am­bi­tious group of Auck­land kids.

The Grey Lynn School stu­dents are look­ing to trade their tiny build­ing for some­thing that will get them more floor space in the long run. The effort is part of their With One Loaf project which kicked off in Oc­to­ber ( Auck­land City Har­bour News, November 7).

The aim was to start with a loaf of bread and keep trad­ing for higher value items un­til they reached their goal of get­ting a house for a de­serv­ing fam­ily.

Hazel Couper, 9, says re­ceiv­ing a ‘‘mini house’’ as a trade has strength­ened her re­solve to help oth­ers.

‘‘It is such a cool thing to be part of.

‘‘We will get a house, we just have to be­lieve in our­selves and never give up.’’

The sixth trade came from NZMA, part of ACG’s Ter­tiary and Ca­reers Divi­sion.

As part of the pri­vate provider’s Level 4 Cer­tifi­cate in Build­ing, stu­dents at the Otahuhu cam­pus con­struct a sleep­out worth roughly $6000.

Se­nior con­struc­tion tu­tor Mark Paul says he would have loved to have given the stu­dents a house but a sleep­out seemed the next best thing.

‘‘These kids have done an amaz­ing thing, you just couldn’t not sup­port it,’’ he says. ‘‘If this is what they are do­ing now I can’t wait to see what they will end up do­ing when they grow up.’’

Cherry Quinn, 9, says the project has had a big im­pact on her.

‘‘We have to be less self­ish and more self­less,’’ she says.

It is a slo­gan teacher Grant O’Con­nor has told them over and over again.

‘‘The kids have been so em­pow­ered by this process,’’ the Pt Eng­land res­i­dent says. ‘‘We are do­ing our bit to try and bridge the gap be­tween those who have stuff and those who don’t.’’

With the orig­i­nal stu­dents now in dif­fer­ent classes for the new school year, O’Con­nor hopes to ex­tend the project across the school.

‘‘We’ll be do­ing this for as long as it takes and I am al­ready think­ing about what we can do be­yond this project.’’

The

stu­dents

ini­tially traded the loaf of bread for two DVDs, then the DVDs for eight Nin­tendo Wii games. They were also do­nated a Wii con­sole, two de­signer cush­ions and two cin­ema seats.

Then they swapped the Wii bun­dle for a brand new toi­let which was do­nated to Habi­tat For Hu­man­ity.

The class traded the re­main­ing items for cab­i­netry, draw­ers, a stove top and a vent which they switched for the sleep­out.

NZMA then do­nated the kitchen to Habi­tat for Hu­man­ity. The stu­dents are now look­ing to make their next barter.

Pho­tos: ROSE CAW­LEY

Gain­ing ground: Young­sters Cheery Quinn, Hazel Couper, Rosie Tell and Hol­lie Donoghue from the With One Loaf project proudly stand in front of their lat­est trade, a sleep­out.

Chang­ing lives: Teacher Grant O’Con­nor has been blown away by his stu­dents’ re­solve.

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