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Wednesday August 2, 2017


Global recognition for project that helps children in need Hutt City Council is receiving international acclaim for its impact on the lives of children from high-deprivation communities. Council was selected as a finalist in the Beyond Sport Global Awards for its North East Kids initiative This is the first ever New Zealand initiative to become a finalist. The awards recognise and promote the use of sport to solve social problems and strengthen communities, particularly those facing disadvantage. It has been running for nine years Winners were set to be announced

on July 26. Hutt City Council has deliberately focussed its efforts in its north-eastern communities, which have some of New Zealand’s highest levels of deprivation. Through learning, literacy, arts, sport, leisure and physical activity initiatives, council has been working with the community to empower children with a brighter future. Council general manager community services Matt Reid said he was thrilled the initiative is receiving such a high level of recognition. “What really moves me is that

we can see children’s engagement and ambitions on the rise – kids are seeing their true potential and dreaming towards brighter futures,” Reid said. “When these kids go on to further education and or training or employment, families benefit, their communities benefit and the city benefits. This is why council is involved in these projects.” Reid said that through working with their many partners and the community, council could make a really positive difference in one of New Zealand’s greatest challenges.

The good things North East Kids has done: • Walter Nash Community Centre: The centre has seen a massive increase in participation and local pride, and in just over 17 months, it has had over one million visits – mostly local children. • 800 local children hold ‘Magic Cards’ which, along with other benefits, gives them free swimming and access to indoor

sports. • The Action Replay project has recycled sports gear to remove cost as a barrier to being active for around 1700 children and their families. • School holiday programmes for local vulnerable youth use sport to promote team building and promoting healthy activity.

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The benefit Hutt Valley children have received from Hutt City Council’s North East Kids initiative has been recognised internationally.

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