Day of free fam­ily fun

Marlborough Express - The Saturday Express, Marlborough - - OUT & ABOUT - SVEN HERSELMAN

The Pic­ton fore­shore will be the place to be on Sun­day for a free day of fam­ily en­ter­tain­ment.

The fourth an­nual Fam­ily Fun Day, run by Barnar­dos as part of the Marl­bor­ough Vi­o­lence In­ter­ven­tion Pro­ject, will fea­ture free en­try to the EcoWorld Pic­ton Aquar­ium, a sausage siz­zle, minia­ture train rides, face paint­ing and bouncy cas­tles.

Barnar­dos co-or­di­na­tor Carla Brownie says they had to post­pone the event, which was due to be held on Novem­ber 20, be­cause of the earth­quake.

The Marl­bor­ough Vi­o­lence In­ter­ven­tion Pro­ject ‘‘cham­pi­ons’’ will also be there on the day to help spread the ‘‘It’s not OK’’ mes­sage.

One of the cham­pi­ons, Nikora Matangi, a teacher at Nga Puawai Ko­hanga Reo, a Blen­heim preschool which teaches in te reo Maori, says she is keen to have the chance to make a dif­fer­ence in the fight against vi­o­lence and abuse.

‘‘When I first started I was hes­i­tant be­cause I didn’t think I could make a dif­fer­ence, but I have stayed with it be­cause I re­ally feel I am mak­ing a dif­fer­ence,’’ Nikora says.

Be­com­ing a cham­pion had also opened her eyes to the preva­lence of abuse in Marl­bor­ough.

‘‘Be­fore I be­came a cham­pion I didn’t know how big the prob­lem was. As I have be­come more aware of it I see it’s more com­mon.

‘‘The good thing is that it is be­ing spo­ken about more and not hid­den.’’

The Fam­ily Fun Day will run from 9am to noon.

PHOTO: SVEN HERSELMAN/ FAIR­FAX NZ

Marl­bor­ough Vi­o­lence In­ter­ven­tion Pro­ject cham­pion Nikora Matangi.

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