Win­ter washout a timely wake-up call

The Tribune (NZ) - - COMMUNITY - NICK RODGERS

The June weather pro­vided a real wakeup call. As the rain ham­mered down, rivers rose and roads and prop­er­ties flooded. Last month’s del­uge was a re­minder that nat­u­ral dis­as­ters hap­pen.

If you were af­fected ei­ther at home or work, I sin­cerely hope the dam­age was not too se­vere and that you stayed safe

What about your neigh­bours? If they were af­fected did you stand up and of­fer as­sis­tance? Did you go and check on those around you?

There are many vul­ner­a­ble peo­ple in our neigh­bour­hoods who need sup­port in times like these, so if you stood up and helped out, thank you. Thank you for help­ing friends, fam­i­lies and neigh­bours and thank you to the emer­gency man­age­ment teams who manned the sta­tions, of­fices and phone lines, and ran the re­sponse sys­tems in place around Palmer­ston North.

I bus­ied my­self surf­ing through the emer­gency up­dates and post­ing them onto our

‘‘The floods raise another is­sue; if this had been a worse event, we may have needed each other to a far greater ex­tent.

Face­book page. What be­came ap­par­ent was the huge num­bers of peo­ple that so­cial media con­nects. Un­til now, I was un­sure how much no­tice they took of our page, but was truly as­ton­ished see­ing our ‘likes’ soar as our ‘friends’ tagged their ‘friends’ into our posts to make sure they were get­ting the in­for­ma­tion they needed to stay safe.

A big thank you to all those Face­book shar­ers for your help.

Re­cently I helped a new sup­port group start up. It was in re­sponse to a bur­glary in their street. This par­tic­u­lar group have taken the idea of Neigh­bour­hood Sup­port and em­braced it. They have now talked to each other about their fam­i­lies, pets, strengths and skills and have cre­ated lists so that they know ex­actly who can help who in times of need. I am sure this group was well pre­pared to help each other out if the need (or the wa­ters) arose.

The floods raise another is­sue; if this had been a worse event, we may have needed each other to a far greater ex­tent. Your NS group is only as good as its con­nec­tions and com­mu­ni­ca­tion. If your group has be­come a bit stale or out of date, why not use the re­cent weather event as the cat­a­lyst to re­con­nect, and check and up­date your de­tails with us and each other.

It’s also a great time to welcome any new neigh­bours into your group It’s not hard to get to­gether, have a chat and a cuppa, get your list ad­justed and send it in to us at pn.neigh­sup­port@xtra.co.nz, we’ll put it on the data­base and send the up­dated lists and new mem­ber packs out to you.

If you think your group needs a lit­tle ex­tra oomph to get it go­ing again, give us a call. I’ll be happy to come out and have a talk with you.

PHOTO: SUPPLIED

Float­ing a boat down the city’s Cedar Gr dur­ing the re­cent flood­ing. The del­uge pro­vided the per­fect op­por­tu­nity to eval­u­ate the readi­ness of Neigh­bour­hood Sup­port groups and their abil­ity to look af­ter mem­bers and neigh­bours.

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