Podcast – Canterbury’s residential red zone

Speak Up Kōrerotia logoChristchurch City Libraries blog hosts a series of regular podcasts from New Zealand’s only specialist human rights radio show Speak up – Kōrerotia. This show is created by Sally Carlton.

The latest episode deals with issues surrounding land in Canterbury that since the 2010/2011 earthquakes has been zoned red and no longer suitable for residential use.

  • Part I: Chief Human Rights Commissioner David Rutherford talks us through the impacts of the red zoning on people still residing in these areas, including in terms of mental health. With reference to the Staying in the Red Zones Report.
  • Part II: What has happened with the red zoned land since 2011 in Waimakariri District and Christchurch city? What are the differences between the various red zoned areas? What lessons can the Waimakariri experience provide for Christchurch?
  • Part III: Public consultation processes – what suggestions have already been proposed? Are people disengaged and how can they be re-engaged? What is the importance of the land for today and future generations? What do you hope to see happen with the land?

This show includes discussion with Simon Markham (Waimakariri District Council), Rob Kerr (Regenerate Christchurch) and Evan Smith (Avon-Ōtākaro Network).

Transcript of the audio file

Mentioned in this podcast

Find out more in our collection

Cover of Waimakariri residential Red Zone Recovery plan Cover of Greening the Red Zone Cover of Staying in the red zones Cover of Christchurch Central Recovery Plan  Cover of Recovery Strategy for Greater Christchurch Cover of Monitoring Human Rights in the Canterbury earthquake recovery Cover of Natural Environment Recovery Programme for Greater Christchurch

More about Speak up – Kōrerotia

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Rising Tide – Helping kids be resilient

Cover of Rising tideRising Tide is a timely new book for kids published in New Zealand aimed at increasing resilience and emotional intelligence.

We all worry and feel anxiety at times in our lives. Anxiety can impact on children and their families in many ways. The Worry Bug Project seeks to support parents and teachers to recognise and address mild to moderate anxiety.
After the success of their previous books Maia and the Worry Bug and Wishes and Worries published after the major earthquakes in Christchurch, families and schools asked the authors for something for older children. Thus Rising Tide was written and developed for Year 5-8 children as a short chapter book. The story is set in New Zealand…

To most people, Ari McInnis is just an ordinary kid. And that’s just the way Ari likes it, because he’s got a secret that he doesn’t want to share – not with anybody. But then something happens to Ari that threatens to expose his secret to everyone. After he helps his Koro in trouble, everyone thinks he’s a hero. If only they knew the truth that is eating away at him. Ari has good skills ‘reading’ water and when he needs some time alone, he retreats to an old dinghy only he knows about. But when the river starts rising in the rain, he – and his Dad who has gone looking for him – are in danger. 

Artwork from Rising tideRising Tide is available in both English and Te Reo Māori. Online versions and an audio component are soon to come. In the back of the book parents and educators will find teaching plans and family exercises accompanying the story aimed at increasing resilience and emotional intelligence, based on Cognitive Behaviour Therapy and Narrative Therapy. It looks at topics such as avoidance and catastrophising.

This book is great for parents, whānau, teachers and home school families wanting to delve more into the themes explored here of anxiety, family, self-belief and identity. This would also be a good book to support children struggling with reading and writing.

he-tai-pari-cover-image-webAbout the authors

Sarina Dickson is a parent, author and teacher (including tutoring in creative writing for children at the Christchurch School for Young Writers). She is passionate about the re-generation of Christchurch and its people.

Julie Burgess-Manning is a parent, author and registered psychologist.

More on resilience for kids

Watch this video of Christchurch parents, kids and teachers talking about mental health and managing anxiety.

How are we doing, Christchurch? – WORD Christchurch

For a session dedicated to an honest discussion of how Christchurch people are coping post-quakes ‘How are we doing, Christchurch?’ had a lot of laughs in it.

Mind you, there’s a dry sort of humour that I’ve grown to associate with Christchurch people and the quakes. Jokes in the midst of loss and grief, of chaos, of fear – for some people a wry quip in a tight spot is the only sane choice. The panellists were very much of this sort – though a flippant remark was often an entree to a more thoughtful, sincere response.

Each had a completely different background and area of expertise, coming from a range of professions – Sam Crofskey, owner of C1 Espresso; Katie Pickles, historian and author of Christchurch Ruptures; Ciaran Fox, of the Mental Health Foundation and All Right? campaign; and Robyn Wallace, CEO of He Oranga Pounamu who is also involved in both iwi and local government organisations in the Waimakariri District/Ngāi Tuāhuriri rohe.

Katie PicklesCiaran FoxBronwyn Hayward Robyn Wallace

So how are we?

Not doing “number twos” in the backyard any more but possibly not as well as we’d like?

It was really interesting to me that Crofskey admitted outright lying to outsiders about how they were doing, early on, saving his honesty for those in his family and community. “I didn’t have the words for people who weren’t affected,” he said.

This particularly hit home for me yesterday when I read a New Zealand Herald column, by a visiting Aucklander who that mentioned that he’d heard “very little whinging” from Christchurch people during a recent stay. The column was a light-hearted one admittedly, but I couldn’t help feeling that it didn’t reflect the reality of Christchurch in the slightest. And certainly not the genuine concern mixed with weariness I felt in that room.

Crofskey’s experiences as a central city dweller, in the early days of the post-quake response emphasised this idea of outsiders not really understanding, when he spoke of “White knights in hi-luxes” trying to out-aid each other and others imposing their own ideas of what was needed –

Let’s put on a rugby game for them and make them happy again.

Cover of Christchurch rupturesThere was also a really great discussion about whether the Christchurch we’re rebuilding is for everyone, or if it’s for the men in suits who run things. Pickles’ hope, certainly, is that we can break out of some of those old pre-quake patterns of operating and make a city that everyone feels at home in. Perhaps we need another 4 or 5 Margaret Mahy type playgrounds around the city, for instance?

Crofskey’s wish for future Christchurch was a simple one – “I want a city my children want to stay in”.

One of Fox’s points made a lot of sense for me personally. He simply pointed out that we’re all really tired, and that being tired affects your ability to see solutions to problems. You fall back on the tried and the true. It certainly hinders your ability to be innovative and to take risks. If you scale the personal up to the organisational level, is it possible that this is part of what’s hindering a really creative, innovative recovery?

All panelists were in agreement that Christchurch people have had a “crisis of trust” in various systems and mechanisms / bureaucracy which are not working for them. There were many, many sounds of agreement from the audience on this point.

Audience questions ran the gamut from rants about the consenting process, to concerns about post-quake democracy, and how to keep and spread the energy of innovative projects like GapFiller into other arenas.

Did we solve Christchurch’s problems? No. But I certainly came away from the session feeling less alone, and comforted by the fact that many other people feel more or less as I do about our shared home.


WORD Christchurch

Hurrah for volunteers!

Today is International Volunteer Day, which is an annual event dedicated to celebrating and recognising all types of volunteers around the world.

Volunteering is a wonderful way to experience new challenges, develop new skills and get involved in the community. Our web page provides all sorts of information about volunteering in and around Christchurch.

Volunteering in Canterbury came into the spotlight after the earthquakes when organisations such as the Student Volunteer Army, the Farmy Army and many others were involved in the massive clean-up effort. These contributions really showed how much can be achieved when people come together with a common purpose to benefit the community.

The volunteering spirit has endured post-quakes with initiatives like Greening the Rubble and Gap Filler, amongst others, actively using volunteers in the quest to fill empty sites before permanent redevelopment.

My own experiences of volunteering helped me to discover if the career path I wanted to go down was right for me. I wanted to get into the museum sector and was fortunate enough to have the opportunity to help out at my local museum. I was able to find out about this type of job in a very hands on way and meet people who could tell me more. This experience initially led to a part time job and helped me get onto a Museum Studies course.

So, whether you have a little time or a lot of time have think about volunteering as you never know where it will lead you – and if you know a volunteer say a big thank you to them today.

Live local, spend local

ShopMy motto as a displaced Christchurch CBD worker is live local, spend local. I’m pledging to stick with Christchurch and part of that pledge is to spend in my local community wherever and whenever I can. I’m not a great fan of malls so I am looking to support Christchurch businesses that have had to relocate or may be operating online only. As the CBD comes back into action I’ll be looking to spend my dollars there and I’ll be supporting local tradesmen in preference to out of towners.

A good place to find out whether your favourite cafe, restaurant or foodie haunt is getting back in operation is the The Press with their Zest supplement. They are encouraging food businesses and restaurants to let them know via Facebook when they are open and what their plans are.

Want to find out if a business is open? Try My Christchurch Business is Open and  Open for Business.

Rebuild Christchurch is a popular Facebook page which may also include helpful alerts to what is going on around the city.

I like the idea of new farmers markets springing up too.

If anyone knows of any other online or other  initiatives to support Christchurch businesses and customers connecting it would be great to share them.

This week’s community briefings

Crowd on The GrassyA second round of community briefings has now been scheduled from Monday, 21 March. The briefings will provide an earthquake recovery update, local information and an opportunity to ask questions on an informal one-to-one basis.

Need help? Visit a recovery assistance centre

Story time at the welfare centreRecovery assitance and welfare centers are now open all across the city. If you or anyone you know is in need of help or assistance,  please pass this information on to them, or help them get to the closest centre.

The centres provide face-to-face service and are a ‘one-stop shop’ of  government, local government and non-government organisations including Work and Income, Housing NZ, Christchurch City Council, Red Cross and quake and counselling support services.

The centres will be open 8.30am – 5pm weekdays and 9am – 4pm weekends at:

  • Linwood Community Link, 154 Aldwins Road, Linwood
  • Wainoni Aranui Family Centre, 31 Hampshire Street, Wainoni
  • Parklands Baptist Church, 180 Queenspark Drive, Parklands
  • St Faiths Hall, 46 Hawke Street, New Brighton
  • Nga Hau e Wha Marae, 250 Pages Road, Aranui
  • Shirley Rugby Club, 25 New Brighton Road, Shirley/Dallington
  • Sydenham Community Centre, 23-25 Hutcheson Street, Sydenham
  • Lyttelton Recreation Centre, 25 Winchester Street, Lyttelton
  • Mount Pleasant Yacht Club, Main Rd, Mount Pleasant (by Ferrymead bridge)
  • Old Boys Collegian Cricket Pavillion, Hagley Oval, South Hagley Park

Source: http://canterburyearthquake.org.nz/welfare-centres/

Keep your spirits up!

Image from our collectionIf you are like me, now that the adrenalin-filled first few days after the earthquake are over, you may be feeling somewhat flat.  Or perhaps you are angry with Mother Earth for the way it has suddenly (and literally!) pulled the rug out from under our feet.

There is no doubt that life has changed in many ways for all of us, and it can be easy to let feelings of helplessness, frustration, sorrow  or pure numb shock overwhelm us.  As Richard’s earlier post outlined, there are many resources available to help us cope.  These resources tell us that some of the most important things we can do is support one another in the community and try to build some enjoyment in each day.

So how do we do this? Well, one way is to go out and attend events in the community. Don’t forget that while many programmes and activities have been cancelled, some are still taking place:

Also keep an eye on:

And visit us here on the Christchurch City Libraries Blog – we’ll do our best to keep you up-to-date. Why not share your tips for getting through? We’d love to hear from you.

Community briefings – tomorrow and Friday

CrowdI attended the community briefing held in Lyttelton yesterday. The Mayor addressed the crowd as did a number of people from different agencies co-ordinating the earthquake recovery response.

Much of the information was useful – especially for the people who haven’t been able to keep up with the media reports.  There was a small window of opportunity to put questions to geotech, telecommunications, Civil Defence and health and Christchurch City Council representatives.

It was also great to catch up with neighbours, friends and colleagues, share stories, compare situations and share a hot chocolate. So if there’s a meeting in your area, head along. You may feel a lot better afterwards.

More community earthquake info briefings will be held tomorrow and Friday for some of the worst quake-affected areas in Christchurch. They will provide essential information and a limited opportunity for questions.

Tomorrow’s meetings:

Location Time For
Richmond Park 9.30 am Residents of Dallington, Avonside & Richmond
Parklands Reserve 12 Noon Residents of Burwood, Parklands, Waimairi Beach.
Rawhiti Domain 2 pm Residents of North New Brighton, New Brighton, Bexley
South New Brighton Park 4 pm Residents of South Brighton, Southshore

More information is also available on the Christchurch City Council and ECan combined site, canterburyearthquake.org.nz.

Friday 11 March:

Location Time For
Brooklands Domain (on Anfield Street) 10 am Residents of Brooklands and Spencerville
St Albans Park (by playground on Barbadoes Street) 1 pm Residents of St Albans and Edgeware
Oaklands School, Halswell (off Cunningham Place) 5 pm Residents of Halswell

FRIDAY 11 March 2011

Location Time For
Brooklands Domain (on Anfield Street) 10 am Residents of Brooklands and Spencerville
St Albans Park (by playground on Barbadoes Street) 1 pm Residents of St Albans and Edgeware
Oaklands School, Halswell (off Cunningham Place)

Emergency, Hardship and bereavement grants available from the Red Cross

This information is sourced from Canterbury Earthquake website. If you know someone who may be eligible for a grant, please share this information with them.

To date, more than $19.2 million has been raised through the New Zealand Red Cross 2011 Earthquake Appeal. Grants released to date include an Emergency and Hardship Grant and a Bereavement Grant.

1. Emergency & Hardship Grant

Eligibility: People living in their homes without power or water or sewerage, or people forced to leave their home because of damage or because they have no water or power or sewerage.

  • Emergency & Hardship Grant: $500 for single people (per household)
  • Emergency & Hardship Grant: $1,000 for couples and families (per household)

2. Bereavement Grant

  • Bereavement Grant: $10,000 for the next of kin of confirmed deceased.

People from overseas affected by the earthquake are eligible to apply for these grants.

How to Apply:

  • Forms online at http://www.redcross.org.nz/
  • By picking up an application form from a Red Cross service centre anywhere in New Zealand, WINZ and Ministry of Social Development service centres and recovery assistance centres located across Christchurch.


For any questions on the emergency grants, please call the dedicated helpline on 0800 754 726.

Grants will be electronically transferred into each recipient’s bank account once approved.

People in New Zealand can donate to the appeal via www.redcross.org.nz or make an automatic $20 donation by ringing 0900 733 27.

People can text a message of hope to 4419 to donate $3.