Tabs keep kids and ‘life’ alive
Len Erickson is the type of guy who likes to keep busy – he also likes to help people.
Put those two concepts together and you get a man who is constantly doing things to benefit others.
For the past nine years Mr Erickson has spent many an hour ripping the tabs off aluminium cans.
He pulls his little stool out and with the patience of a saint sits and removes the tabs.
To date the Tirau Lions Club member has contributed more than 50 kilograms of tabs to Kan Tabs for Kidney Kids.
‘‘About 3500 tabs give a child with a kidney disorder an hour on dialysis,’’ he said.
‘‘This is my way of making a little difference.’’
Kan Tabs for Kidney Kids is an initiative supported by Lions clubs throughout New Zealand.
Founded in 1990, Kidney Kids is a not-for-profit parent driven organisation that assists parents of children who have kidney disorders.
Kidney Kids provides regular newsletters, information and resources regarding kidney disorders and organises annual camps for children who may not be able to attend ordinary school camps because of their medical needs.
Most importantly Kidney Kids offers support for families through regular meetings, social activities and education evenings where parents can meet a specialist to talk about their child’s condition.
Cans get dropped off to Mr Erickson by the bag load. He has also started collecting wine bottle tops.
If you have any you would like to donate, please drop them to Janice King at Matamata Countdown.
There are also a number of other Matamata residents who collect can tabs including the great-granddaughters of the late Brian Cooper.
Mr Cooper used to spend hours each day gathering can tabs to donate to the Kan Tabs for Kidney Kids initiative.
Mr Cooper’s granddaughter Janice Nelmes said he loved children and people in general and was always looking for ways to help others.
‘‘It was his way of doing his bit for kids on dialysis,’’ she said.
Since his death Mrs Nelmes’ daughters Rihan and Emilee have been collecting can tabs which are picked up from Matamata Primary School.
‘‘We all just adored him. He was 80 years old and would still be doing flips out on the front lawn with Emilee,’’ Mrs Nelmes said.
‘‘This is our way of keeping granddad’s memory alive.’’
Can tabs or wine bottle tops can also be dropped off at the Matamata Chronicle office.
Collector: Len Erickson with just some of the tabs he has taken from aluminium cans.