Via Christchurch City Council

Two Community Boards have thrown their support behind the Give Gear, Get Great campaign to help provide children with a sporting chance of playing their favourite game.

Concerned about the combined cost of junior sports memberships, uniforms and gear – and the burden placed on many families – Spreydon-Cashmere Community Board Chairperson Karolin Potter first suggested the local community could help out in 2016.

Her drive to collect unwanted sports gear to pass on to low-income families has now spread further afield as the Halswell-Hornby-Riccarton Community Board prepares to kicks off the collection campaign locally.

Karolin Potter, left, and Emma Pavey check out the sports gear donations.

Community Board Chairperson Karolin Potter, left, and Emma Pavey check out the sports gear donations.

It plans to station 10 bright blue wheelie bins around the area.

Ms Potter says the Spreydon-Cashmere Community Board’s Community Recreation Adviser, Emma Pavey, “took up the original gear recycling idea and literally ran with it”.

“Emma ensured the drop-off bins, which are bright red in our area, were in place and soon got the ‘Give Gear, Get Great’ message out to the wider community,” she says. “So many people have unwanted rackets and balls – or football boots that are now too small – at the back of their wardrobes and cupboards.

“By providing multiple drop-off points for unwanted sports gear and targeting schools to get involved, I knew we could tackle the cost issue together and share the gear within our community.

“However, we do not have the capacity to collect clothing.

“Today, we have drop-off bins at South Library in Beckenham and many schools around the area.”

The sports gear is often handed out at community events, such as the Hoon Hay Fiesta.

“To see youngsters excitedly trying on sports shoes or picking up a basketball is wonderful,” Ms Potter says.

“We are handing out sports gear and footwear – along with providing more opportunities to play sport – to many youngsters each season and cost need no longer be a barrier to getting active.”

Community Board Chair
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