Helping Hands ‘sharing the love’
One good turn deserves another and that was exactly how the Richmond Riding for the Disabled got a helping hand.
Earlier in the year, the Mitre 10 Mega Helping Hands project went to the aid of the Romanowski family.
Miro Romanowski, a young boy with cerebral palsy and ataxia, was in need of a suitable shower room he could be wheeled into on his wheelchair with lights and a hand basin low enough for him to use.
Many hands made light work of the revamp project and money was raised from the community to help with funding.
Mitre 10 Mega marketing coordinator Murray Leaning said once the construction was complete, Miro’s mum, Eva Romanowski suggested the extra funds went to the Richmond Riding for the Disabled.
With Miro attending the riding therapy, Eva knew they desperately needed work done on their arena.
‘‘She could’ve easily said ‘Thanks, give us as much money as you can’ but she was like, ‘Actually, who needs it more is the Riding for the Disabled.
‘‘That’s kind of the sharing the love thing that Helping Hands ... is about. The community spirit.’’
New Zealand Riding for the Disabled Association (NZRDA) provides interaction with horses for children and adults with physical, intellectual, emotional and social challenges to develop increased ability, independence and self-worth.
In the last week of the school holidays Leaning rustled up some labour from his team, including NMIT carpentry tutor Steve McIntyre and his teenage boys.
The redevelopment of the horse and training arena required a higher fence around the perimeter as it no longer complied after years of building up the ground inside the arena.
Leaning said work included building another fence ’’hundreds of metres’’ around the arena, taking off old rails and chain sawing posts to ground level, scrubbing out horse troughs throughout the paddock, weeding and general maintenance.
It was a ‘‘huge job’’ but the place looked ‘‘amazing’’ after the overhaul, he said.
He said the crew did a full day’s work to complete the revamp which otherwise would have taken weeks.
While the not-for-profit organisation had all the materials they needed through funding, they were not able to get funding for the construction, Leaning said.
‘‘That’s where they struck a sticking point because they had all the stuff sitting there, they just couldn’t do anything with it.’’
Leaning said the labour involved would have cost more than $20,000.
Nelson’s Mitre 10 Mega Helping Hands takes applications from the community and organisations needing a project done. Ten members of the Mitre 10 Mega team volunteer their labour, tools and materials.
Charlotte Reeve of Nelson Mitre 10 Mega works with fellow staff who spent the day at Richmond Riding for the Disabled in Champion Rd, as part of the Mitre 10 Mega Helping Hands Project.