Senseless act costs centre
A senseless act of vandalism has put a Tokoroa Early Childhood centre thousands out of pocket.
Coming back from a refreshing Easter break was bitter sweet for the children and staff at St Luke’s Mokopuna & Tamariki Apii Punanga as they returned to find the centre had been the target of arsonists.
Manager Poko Natua received a call from the maintenance officer informing her of the damage.
Two shade canopies hanging above the children’s playground and sandpit had been damaged.
Singed holes of melted plastic randomly lined the canopies in an act described by Natua as ‘‘senseless’’ and ‘‘stupid’’.
‘‘These two sun shades together are $21,000. We had to order them from Tauranga so now it’s worth nothing.’’
She said the childrens’ playground has been vandalised over the years but the latest arson attack was a first.
‘‘We’ve had people coming through and pushing our equipment away or else play in the sandpit and leave a whole lot of mess.’’
With no insurance to replace the canopies Natua said they would have to fundraise or apply for funding for the replacements.
‘‘We didn’t think things like that would happen. We need this sunshade.’’
Unable to hide the damage she said the children kept pointing and asking what happened.
‘‘They said mama look what happened.
‘‘We don’t mind the kids playing in the weekend but what happens is they turn all our things over and come Monday we have to put it back in place.’’
Anyone with information can contact the Tokoroa Police.
Senseless vandalism at St Luke’s Mokopuna & Tamariki Apii Punanga Reo have left children and staff shocked.