18 June 2012
By Nick Tolerton
Addington Action, which helps earthquake affected households get back on their feet, just keeps getting bigger and better.
The volunteer group has just received $50,000 ingrants from the Todd Foundation and the Tindall Foundation which will enable it to rent a building as its base for two years.
It is spreading its wings to look after struggling households from Waltham to Hoon Hay instead of only Addington, and has started a successful fruit and vegetable co-op.
Organiser Mike Peters said the grants were marvelous news.
Addington Action has been operating out of five garages which the owners let it use - plus Mr Peters' spare bedroom.
"We're looking for a warehouse -type building where we can send our building crews out from, and where we can keep our materials, tools, vehicle, and trailers," he said.
"We are looking at buildings at the moment and hope to have something in about a month, and plan to fit it out in August and have it ready to use at the beginning of September."
It would be great for the organisation to be able to consolidate everything at one place - it had been frustrating because it had been able to operate only half steam while using several premises, he said.
Addington Action had a four-wheel-drive vehicle and is raising money to get a box truck with a lifter.
Set up to help Addington people the day after the February earthquake, Addington Action is now expanding and working from Waltham across to Hoon Hay because of so many needy households in these areas, too.
It's worked with a committee of 50 - one representative from each street in its area - and Mr Peters said the aim was to expand that to 200.
Six weeks ago Addington Action also set up the Christchurch South Fruit and Veggie Co-op, to which people pay $10 a week and get $20 to $30 worth of produce.
The co-op brought from the markets directly, he said. At present it had seven distributors - community groups, schools, and churches - and hoped to have 20 within four months. The Co-op is serving 154 households.
The produce co-op was valuable for people living in earthquake-damaged homes, who had "astronomical" bills to heat them, and sometimes not enough to eat because of their power bills he said.
[Addington Action Editor's note, this article has been corrected.]