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Winning at going Plastic Free

Looking back at our Plastic Free July competitions is really encouraging. Lots of great entries that were on display at Te Ahu for several weeks, and Te Puna Aroha at Kaitāia College put up their own display in the College foyer. Wouldn’t it be fantastic to see categories about being single use plastic free and the impacts of plastic pollution in our A&P Show?

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Organiser Waikarere Gregory said “We had a fantastic Plastic Free Kaitāia Awards ceremony on Tuesday 7th August. Big thanks to all those who came along to tautoko. And big CONGRATULATIONS to our winners. I hope this is the beginning of a wonderful, at times challenging journey for you all, reconnecting with our environment, a Papatuanuku, a Ranginui, a Tangaroa ma – ultimately those and that which sustains us!

Kia kaha tonu Te Hiku! Congratulations for your efforts and support of this kaupapa, all the best in taking this kaupapa forward. And a huge thank you to all the businesses and individuals who entered, incredible changes made, keep up the great mahi.”

And the winners were……

Best Plastic Free Kaitāia Business 2018: Far North Surf Shop

Best Plastic Free Kaitāia individual: Zoë Marika Brown.

Children’s poster competition:

Teina (aged 5-9yrs)

1st   Mikaela Tice

2nd Xavier Brown

3rd Rueben Tice

Waenga (aged 10-13yrs)

1st   Megan van Zyl

2nd Briah Leigh Hughes

3rd  Nevaeh McCarthy

Tuakana (aged 14-17yrs)

1st   jointly entries from Te Puna Aroha

2nd Amelia Cutler

3rd  Liathano Morris

Far North Surf Bros responded on Facebook “Kia ora Far North, we are super stoked to win this award for best business in plastic free July Kaitaia. Thanks to the Eco Centre for handing the reins to Waikarere Gregory to co-ordinate Plastic Free July Kaitaia she did an amazing job. Awesome to see so many local businesses and individuals taking part in this kaupapa. It has definite made us aware of some changes we need to make as a business and in our own homes.”

The Northland Age covered the prize giving:

Waikarere Gregory has no doubt the younger generation has got the anti-plastic message.

“You kids rock,” she said at the presentation of prizes in the inaugural Plastic Free Kaitaia 2020 competition at Te Ahu on Tuesday.

“You know what to do.”

Poster prizes were presented to children in three age groups, while Jonny Andrews and Tania Smith were there to collect the Far North Surf Shop’s award as the town’s best-performing business in reducing the use of plastic.

The Beachcomber restaurant, the Te Ahu Cafe, and the Hope Cafe had also been in the running, Ms Gregory said, the winner being drawn, given that the contenders were at different stages of their “journey” so were difficult to compare.

She went on to thank the Eco Centre volunteers, the judges, sponsors and competition participants, while Mayor John Carter, who presented the prizes, described her as a special lady who also had to be thanked.

“You can be proud that you are really making a big difference in your community.”

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