Canterbury     Waitaha

Check out these "90 second" potraits of two great changemakers we connected with during our time in this region. We'll be adding to these in the months ahead so watch this space.

Ruth Gardner - Volunteer Coordinator

Ruth is Manager of Volunteering Canterbury and a resident of the inner city Avon Loop. Since the February earthquake she has been working from her cottage within the red zone cordon.


Ruth is also an active blogger and civic commentator. You can read more about Ruth and her work by visiting and

Michelia Ward - Fair Trade Educator

Michelia’s sense of injustice was heightened when working amongst coffee farmers as a volunteer in Cameroon, so on returning home to Christchurch she joined up with New Zealand’s trade justice organisation Trade Aid. Now a full time staff member, Michelia is the communications and partnership manager.


You can find out more about Michelia's work at Trade Aid by visiting

Week 5 of the ReGeneration Roadtrip started with the journey from Dunedin. We stopped in to see the crew at St Kevins in Oamaru and a trip to the historic waterfront part of town. We finished the day in Geraldine with a fantastic changemakers film evening at the Geraldine Movie Theatre. The next day we spent some fun time helping to plaster a straw bale house and checking out another beautiful ecological home in town.

The next day we drove into Christchurch and hooked up with some awesome people from the Linwood and New Brighton communities. These two Community Cafe sessions were really special. We also visited four local high schools and generally got a better sense of what it's like dealing with the challenges of life after the recent earthquake.

A highlight of the week was the 8x8 presentation evening in Riccarton on Thursday night. Big ups to Trevinos Bar for giving us use of thier conference rooms at short notice and thanks to the great crew at the Canterbury Young Professionals newtwork for coming along and supporting the event. There were great talks from Jocelyn Papprill (Untouched World), Sacha Dowell (Save Animals From Exploitation), Anthony Rohan (White Elephant Trust) and Louis Brown (Social Innovation).

On Saturday we spent the day with the local YMCA and White Elephant crews. Sunshine, an amazing race, BBQ lunch, some fresh beats and a pro-action cafe session to finish the day off. Thanks to Hayley and Nathan for organising. Our last stop in Canterbury was at Kaikoura High School staying at the school marae 'Te Poho O te Mātauranga'. Thanks to all the staff and students, especially Michelle Heald and the Enviro-Council for your hospitality.

Massive respect to all the people we met in Christchurch. Your resilience and sense of community made a lasting impression on all our crew. Ngā mihi nui!

Community Gardens - New Brighton

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