Toys de­light Ton­gan chil­dren

Kapi-Mana News - - OPINION -

Tawa Ro­tary has de­clared its sec­ond an­nual Toys For Tonga pro­ject an ‘‘ out­stand­ing suc­cess’’.

In a joint ini­tia­tive with the Welling­ton South Ro­tary Club, 66 car­tons of toys, sta­tionery and ed­u­ca­tional books do­nated by peo­ple in Welling­ton’s north­ern sub­urbs were sent to Tonga on HMNZS Otago in May.

One of the co-or­di­na­tors, Paul Mears, said par­tic­u­lar sup­port for the pro­ject was re­ceived from churches and schools in Tawa, Lin­den and Chur­ton Park, along with many in­di­vid­u­als.

Dis­tri­bu­tion in Tonga was done by Ro­tary Club of Nuku’alofa.

‘‘The pro­ject was an out­stand­ing suc­cess.

‘‘You had to be present on May 21 in Nuku’alofa to wit­ness the plea­sure on the faces of the chil­dren, col­lect­ing the toys and books and the grat­i­tude ex­pressed by the adults.

‘‘For any­one who has not been to Tonga [this was my first visit] it is hard to un­der­stand the con­di­tions in which peo­ple live and chil­dren learn at school, com­pared to New Zealand,’’ he said.

‘‘This pro­ject brought home to me the in­valu­able work we do as Ro­tar­i­ans for those much less for­tu­nate than us.’’

Mr Mears said Toys For Tonga demon­strated there are projects in which a large num­ber of mem­bers are able to par­tic­i­pate in ‘‘ a very prac­ti­cal and sat­is­fy­ing way’’.

‘‘ A sig­nif­i­cant num­ber of peo­ple’’ had com­mit­ted time and en­ergy to the pro­ject, Mr Mears said.

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