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Devonport rallies to support Christchurch

Flagstaff Team

Devonport making a difference…Phil Connolly with the fundraising t-shirts

People in Devonport are joining forces to offer a helping hand to grieving friends and families of victims of Christchurch’s mosque shootings.

Hundreds of Devonport families have filled up boxes with food and other specified items, plus gifts and notes of love and support for delivery to those affected by the mass shooting.

The initiative is coordinated by 500 friends, a charity set up in response to the Christchurch earthquakes, which has gone on to respond to other disasters.

The boxes, which children decorated, were dropped back to Vauxhall School on the evening of 30 March for distribution.

In another initiative, family-run natural cosmetics company Zeosoft, helping distribute t-shirts printed with a motif of a kiwi bird holding hands with a Muslim girl.

A group of businesses are involved in the project, sparked when accountant David Steele was feeling glum on 16 March and wondering what he could do to help. His daughter sent him a heart-warming design by her friend Sam Baker. Steele had the idea of printing 1000 t-shirts and selling them as a fundraiser.

Zeosoft chief executive Phil Connolly said helping with distribution “seemed like the least we could do to help. David [Steele] mentioned it and we distribute our products already, so it seemed like a no-brainer for us.”

T-shirts are on sale for $30, of which $10 will cover costs and the $20 profit will be donated to the Islamic Information Centre in Christchurch, which is assisting grieving families after the 15 March tragedy.

If you would like to find out more or purchase a t-shirt, visit dpa.co.nz/tee-fundraiser.

This article originally appeared in the April 5 edition of the Devonport Flagstaff. Download PDF.