Nz Reading Initiative Benefits Rural Schools

The Zimbabwe Rural Schools Library Trust in New Zealand recently upped its efforts to acquire books for rural schools back home through a fundraising initiative.

ZRSLT conducted a raffle in New Zealand that saw participants buying tickets in support of the rural schools’ project while a number of donors also chipped in for the good cause.

Hinekuoro Hohua of Whakatane and Romelyn Garde of Rotorua emerged winners in a raffle.

The draw was conducted by the president of the Rotorua Multicultural Society Dr Magriet Theron in Rotorua, New Zealand.

A total of 308 tickets were sold, and NZ$1 845 (US$1 210) inclusive of ticket sales and donations was raised. Hinekuoro won the Mitre 10 Mega gift voucher valued at NZ$500, while Romelyn won the ZRSLT debut CD compilation “Libraries Without Boundaries”.

The gift voucher was donated by Mitre 10 Mega Te Rapa at The Base in Hamilton after a sausage sizzle booked for 11 April 2020 was cancelled as a result of the Covid-19 pandemic.

“I never entered the draw to win, but to support a good cause”, said an excited Hinekuoro, a former teacher who is passionate about adding value to the lives of deserving children.

“We are privileged here in New Zealand to have easier access to reading material in comparison to some developing countries. So when I saw the opportunity to help raise money for shipping books to Zimbabwe for reading by the children there, I bought many tickets as I could to ensure the children received some reading material”, she added.

Romleyn was looking forward to listening to Ndebele and Shona songs on the CD, compiled by the ZRSLT from songs donated by musicians based in Canada, New Zealand, the United Kingdom and Zimbabwe.

“Music is a universal language which has the potential to unite the world for common causes, and I am fortunate to have won a CD with songs in languages that I am yet to master. It gives me an opportunity to learn Zimbabwean languages, as well as increase my value for reading”, said Romleyn.

ZRSLT New Zealand deputy chairperson, Dr Kudakwashe Tuwe, who sold the winning ticket to Hinekuoro, was thankful to all the people who purchased tickets and donated generously.

“I was inspired by the level of appreciation of the work we do by the people who supported us by buying tickets or simply donating when they realised we were raising funds to support a children’s reading initiative in rural Zimbabwe,” said Dr Tuwe.

“The money raised will go a long way in fulfilling our objective to make a difference in the lives of the children through providing access to reading material for them.”

He said the raffle was a win-win affair as those who supported by buying tickets and donating got the satisfaction of contributing to a noble cause, those who won prizes got to enjoy their prizes while the rural children of Zimbabwe will enjoy the books.

“We are grateful to all those who gave a helping hand — the ticket buyers, cash donors and to Mitre 10 Mega at The Base in Hamilton who donated a gift voucher after a sausage sizzle which failed not because of their own making. Mita 10 Mega Te Rapa demonstrated its unparalleled Corporate Social Responsibility spirit,” said Dr Tuwe.

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