Packs to help Auck­land’s home­less

Papakura Courier - - FRONT PAGE - NIGEL MOFFIET

Lara Wharepapa Bridger is out to make a dif­fer­ence in peo­ple’s lives one small ges­ture at a time.

The Pa­pakura res­i­dent is mak­ing toi­letry packs filled with use­ful items which she is giv­ing to home­less peo­ple sleep­ing in their cars at Bruce Pul­man Park.

She has made 35 packs, with the help of do­na­tions, which in­clude things such as soap, sham­poo, tooth­paste, tooth­brushes, ra­zors and san­i­tary pads.

A lot of peo­ple were keen to help, Bridger says.

She has got to know some of the peo­ple who are sleep­ing in cars and has heard their sto­ries of hard­ship af­ter vis­it­ing the park with her part­ner Har­ley.

They have even taken a BBQ down there for free ‘‘cook ups’’.

A lot of the peo­ple are sin­gle and some are suf­fer­ing from drug and al­co­hol ad­dic­tions,’’ she says.

‘‘One guy there works full-time and just can’t af­ford rent. He stays in his car try­ing to save for a bond.

‘‘They all park their cars there for safety … they all know each other.’’

Bridger hopes the packs will make a small dif­fer­ence.

‘‘It lets peo­ple feel bet­ter about them­selves. Ev­ery­one likes feel­ing clean and fresh. It gives them more con­fi­dence.

‘‘Now that so­cial me­dia is around ... peo­ple are more aware of the hard­ships,’’ she says.


Lara Wharepapa Bridger hopes the toi­letry packs she has made up will pro­vide a con­fi­dence boost for peo­ple sleep­ing in their cars.

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