Pledgeme bid for Post Office
Te Puke Times is getting behind a campaign to keep Te Puke Post Shop where it is.
Last month, Te Puke Centre Working Group announced its intention to become the operators of postal and bill-paying services in Te Puke.
If successful, the Post Shop would remain in its Jellicoe St location and the space would also house an information and visitor centre.
Today the group is launching its Pledgeme page as the first step in making the idea a reality.
Group chairwoman Karen Summerhays says while people have stopped her in the street and offered cash, at this stage they can keep their money in their pockets.
“We are really looking for support for the Pledgeme campaign. We need to know the community supports us to buy the business as a community asset — then we can negotiate with the landlord to stay in the same place and refit the building for a Post Office and information centre as well.”
“We want pledges [not donations] because if we don’t get enough then we can’t buy the business and the whole thing falls away.”
A target of $50,000 has been set — enough to buy the business and cover lawyer fees and negotiation fees.
“That would get us across the line — $65,000 would allow us to move forward confidently into the next stage.”
The community’s support is needed as the philanthropic funding organisations will not make grants to buy a business.
“Hopefully next year they will be on board to help us set up the information centre.”
Karen says there has been a very positive response since the announcement of the working group’s plan.
Group member Monique Lints says she has been contacted by several people wanting to support the plan.
“You don’t realise how big the need is until you put it out there or threaten to take it away.”
Monique says the visitor and information centre will be a place to celebrate Te Puke.
“We’re the kiwifruit capital of the world, but there’s nothing to celebrate that.”
Would-be supporters can make a pledge by visiting www.Pledgeme.co.nz and search Save the Te Puke Post Office. Alternatively, fill in and cut out the form on this page.
Te Puke Centre Working Group from the left, (back row) Karen Summerhays, Carolyn Jones, Dale Snell, Monique Lints, (front row) Viv Brownrigg, Jenny Wotten and Nicola Cooke.