Lantern House Trust supports community

This story is about two families who have gone to extreme lengths to ensure not only their own children but many families in the future have a safe, nurturing environment to grow in.

Sheri and Andy Hay’s daughter Monique is 20-years-old and has very high special needs as she has Dravet syndrome.  She has autistic features and requires 24 hour care.

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Julie and Roger’s son Mitchell has just turned 20-years-old.  He has very high special needs as he has Cornelia de Lange syndrome and also requires 24 hour care.

These two special needs young adults are part of an increasing group that society is failing.  More funding along with better support has to be found to work along-side families to enable their children to have a greater quality of life.

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Lantern House Trust brings community together to build a “home”

Dow AgriSciences

Dow AgroSciences, Habitat for Humanity and the Lantern House Trust have partnered to build a residential home in Inglewood.

The house will home up to five disabled people with their caregivers which is a first for Taranaki.

“It’s really exciting to come here and work on this house where we are collaborating to not just make it a home for a family but for the young adults who have disabilities to live together with their caretakers,” said Production Leader, Shannon Oglesby.

“This is our 6th house in Taranaki and I’ve been involved in several that Dow has done in the United States.  We are excited to get a team out today to work together to make some significant progress.

The company is very passionate about every build and uses each opportunity for team building.

“We have expertise at our manufacturing facility like electrical, construction and engineering so it was fun to get people to come out and use their skills to help.

“We’ve got people from all our different functions, manufacturing, supply chain, commercial all working together from leaders to operators to engineers.  We wanted to get a cross section to come out and work together to build.”

Dow AgroSciences have been involved in Habitat for Humanity globally for over 30 years.

“This is our second one in Inglewood, though this build is different from the first, being a residential home.  There are then two in New Plymouth and two in Waitara,” said office manager, Dana Candy.

“We have people volunteering today that don’t necessarily work or interact with each other each on a daily basis at work so it’s great seeing them here working alongside each other doing something a little bit different.”

Staff member and volunteer Clare Nolan said when the call went out so many people stepped forward it was overwhelming.

“I think that it is fair to say that the idea of helping out was very, very popular amongst the staff. We have got two shifts with 10 on each shift as we had more people than we could accommodate.

“We intended to paint, but of course with the weather that didn’t work out so we have been doing insulation.  We have brought one of our builders with us so he is out the back helping with the carpentry.  We have got some of the maintenance staff in here helping out with the roof.”

Sherry and Andy Hay along with Julie and Roger Landers formed Lantern House Trust to ensure the future care and safety of their children.

“We are all quite similar in our philosophies of raising our kids and we are quite proactive about making sure there are good choices and they have a good quality of life.  We go out there actively looking for those things,” said Julie Landers.

Stepping out in New Plymouth

Hang gliding at Back Beach
Handgliding at Back Beach

With the holidays approaching fast have you thought about venturing out and about in New Plymouth?

BackBeach is beautiful to wander along especially when the tide is out.  The surfers are out in force when the wind is right; also the hang gliders, and more commonly, para gliders float around on the thermal air coming off the high cliffs.

Paritutu Rock is also an unusual place to clamber about.  It is a portion of the outer rim of an extinct volcano.  The steep track up is graded hard.  Make sure to allow heaps of time for the rest at the top as there are amazing views in all directions -most certainly not for the faint hearted.

Another lovely beach with a great playground is NgamotuBeach.  There are public toilets and barbecue facilities available.  You will also find the beam pump, which marks the site of Moturoa No. 4 oilwell, drilled to a depth of 666 metres in 1931 and closed in 1972.  The beam pump was erected by Shell BP and Todd Oil Services as a memorial to the pioneers of oil exploration in New Zealand.

Kawaroa Park is well known for its rock pools.  Make sure to have sturdy footwear.  Young and old have fun exploring the rockpools, seeing creatures up close and then putting them back into their homes.

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