"Give a gas heater to Christchurch and help warm up a cold winter," says Baptist Earthquake Response Coordinator, William Drury-Turnbull. “We know that winter for many in Christchurch is going to be brutal with a very real prospect of power outages to add to their misery.”
People working with the residents of the earthquake ravaged suburbs of Christchurch had been told that extra heating would be a great gift to give. Many occupied, quake-damaged homes are still very draughty and colder than usual. There are very real concerns for the health of people living in the homes, particularly the old, very young and vulnerable.
Aucklanders are being asked to take either new or serviced old gas heaters (heaters only, no gas bottles) to one of four collection points during the week of June 15 to 19. Please contact these collection points for exact times and dates they are collecting the heaters:
- Liberty Christian Church, 96 Lansford Crescent, Avondale - Sue Hodson, (09) 820 0168
- Eastgate Christian Centre, 5 Ben Lomond Crescent, Pakuranga - Allan Taylor, (09) 576 1500
- Manukau City Baptist Church, 9 Lambie Drive, Manukau - Alistair Hall, (09) 278 8998
- Windsor Park Baptist Church, 550 East Coast Road, Mairangi Bay – Grant Harris, (09) 477 0002
The organisers ask that donated heaters are wrapped for protection during shipping and that $10 is included to help pay for the freight.
The Gas Heater Appeal is being backed by Contact Energy, which is providing 1,200 gas bottles plus the first fill free. Contact Energy has also undertaken to service the heaters and provide safety instructions with them.
The appeal organisers hope to be able to start handing out the heaters in Christchurch by June 28 as the Southern winter starts to really bite. “It will be great to be able to help out this way, knowing that the donation is totally practical," William says. "We keep hearing people say that they want to do something direct for Christchurch – this is one very clear way of meeting that wish.”
The Baptist Church earthquake relief efforts in Christchurch are taking place is association with Earthquake Response Coordinator across Denominations and the Non-Government Organisation Disaster Relief Forum (NDRF), a group of national and international NGOs working together on earthquake relief and recovery in Christchurch.