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The Mental Health Foundation of New Zealand—17 December 2015

December 19, 2015

The Mental Health Foundation of New Zealand is a charitable trust organised to help people, families, organisations and communities to improve and sustain mental health and reach full potential.  A vision of the Foundation is to create a society where all people are able to achieve positive mental health and well being.

Today seventeen members of the Auckland office visited CUE Haven to assist us with our summer walking track project and to have a celebratory end of year meal together.  The group included Amanda, Amy, Charlie, Donna, Ellen, Gina, Jack, Jono, Kate, Kylie, Michael, Moira, Ngavaine, Noradene, Philip, Rebekah, and Virginia.

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We got acquainted over morning tea and gave the group an overview of the CUE Haven Restoration project and a description of the work planned for the day and a safety briefing.

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Noradene then said a karakia to bless the project and the work we were about to undertake.

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We then rode up to the top of the property and Thomas gave the group a short demonstration of the tasks and the team went to work.  We have been clearing and shaping the track and are now about a third of the way done.

The team started working through a nasty patch of kikuyu grass.  The thick, deep roots are difficult to pull out and cut through but the hard working team made great progress.

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As the dead grass was cleared away the team could determine the best way to shape and bench the track and cut steps as necessary.

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We were interrupted by a few short rain showers but Noradene helped keep the positive energy flowing by serenading us with her ukulele!

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The team made amazing progress and after a couple of hours of labouring away took a walk back down to the cottage and had a chance to see some other aspects of the CUE Haven property and the progress of the restoration project.  Then it was time for a leisurely Christmas lunch.

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And in keeping with the spirit of the season, the entire group treated us to a version of Silent Night in Maori and English with Jack and Noradene providing the ukulele accompaniment.  It was really nice and we very much appreciated it.

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We’d like to thank Gina for organising the visit.

And a very big thank you to the hard working team.  It was a pleasure meeting and working with the team and we very much appreciate their contribution to CUE Haven.  The team added almost fifty metres to the new walking track in difficult conditions and their efforts will be enjoyed by visitors for years as they explore the growing native forest.

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Much of the work of the Mental Health Foundation is built around the concept of the Five Ways to Well Being.  The idea is that building these actions into one’s daily life can lead to positive change and outcomes.  The Five Ways are – Be Active, Keep Learning, Give, Connect and Take Notice.  And all of the team members certainly embodied all five actions today.

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Thanks again for a great day and for your fantastic contribution to CUE Haven.

Have a wonderful holiday season and we look forward to seeing you all again in 2016!

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