Just Zilch needs $15,000

The Tribune (NZ) - - FRONT PAGE - RICHARD MAYS

$15,000. That’s all that is needed so Just Zilch can open in time for Christ­mas.

Con­sid­er­ing the orig­i­nal re­fit of the new free food store on Feather­ston St op­po­site Boys’ High was costed out at around $100,000, the com­mu­nity fundrais­ing and com­mer­cial good­will for this project has been huge.

New Zealand’s long­est-op­er­at­ing free food store, the non­profit or­gan­i­sa­tion not only pro­vides ‘‘no cost, no judg­ment’’ food for those who need it, it res­cues sur­plus food sup­plies that oth­er­wise would be sent to land­fill. The $15,000 is needed to in­stall freezer and chiller units.

‘‘With­out them, we won’t be able to take the pal­lets of yo­ghurt that we re­ceived the other week,’’ says di­rec­tor Re­becca Cul­ver. ‘‘If we don’t get a fridge, do­na­tions like that will be wasted.’’

The new coun­cil-pro­vided premises along from Mitre 10 Mega has un­der­gone ex­ten­sive ren­o­va­tion to meet food han­dling stan­dards. Con­struc­tion man­ager Bob Isles of Isles Con­struc­tion found him­self vol­un­teered for the po­si­tion by his son Cameron dur­ing a weekly meet­ing with sup­port­ive mayor Grant Smith.

‘‘Bob is a leg­end,’’ Re­becca says. ‘‘ Stuff we thought we’d have to pay for, he’s talked busi­nesses into giv­ing, pro­vid­ing at cost or at re­duced rates.’’

‘‘I was in at Hynds want­ing a couple of wheel stops,’’ Bob re­calls.

‘‘Can you give me th­ese for noth­ing, I asked, they’re for Just Zilch. Oh, OK, when do you need them...’’

That sort of re­sponse has been wide­spread from lo­cal busi­nesses.

‘‘It’s been amaz­ing, we’ve had tradies and busi­nesses from all over the city help­ing. It has truly been an in­spir­ing project to be in­volved with and the Just Zilch team is very grate­ful,’’ Re­becca says.

Just Zilch plans to move to the new premises on Tues­day, De­cem­ber 15, and Re­becca is look­ing for help mov­ing from the Fitzher­bert Ave store in the week lead­ing up to the big day.

‘‘If any­one would like to help us move, they can vol­un­teer on our Face­book page. We’re also ac­cept­ing do­na­tions on our Giveali­itle page and web­site.

This Fri­day night, there’s a screen­ing of the award-win­ning Cana­dian film Just Eat It. The en­ter­tain­ing doco about res­cu­ing waste food, screened at the re­cent Reel Earth Fes­ti­val, and will be shown at the open-air ‘cin­ema’ on Ge­orge St at 8.30pm. En­try is by koha with pro­ceeds go­ing to the build­ing fund.

PHOTO: MUR­RAY WIL­SON/FAIR­FAX NZ

$15,000 fills this space. Re­becca Cul­ver the driv­ing force be­hind Just Zilch with con­struc­tion man­ager Bob Isles where the freez­ers and chillers will be in the new Feather­ston store.

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