New sponsors and support were the extra bonus of our recent Westhaven Rotary project aimed at providing local primary school students in Auckland, NZ with attractive and productive edible gardens. “Not only did we achieve a significant upgrade to the school’s edible gardens that the students will enjoy for years to come, we also attracted major sponsors, including Bunnings Warehouse and Countdown supermarket, who then engaged more sponsors on our behalf,” says Rex Billington, President of the Rotary Club of Westhaven.
The project aimed to bring new life to the school gardens that had fallen into disuse by refilling the existing planter boxes, creating an all-weather path around the garden and filling the boxes with edible plants that the students could eat.


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Westhaven Rotary contacted the St Joseph’s Primary School new Principal Regina Smuga and Parent Teacher Chair, who in turn brought in project partners Bunnings and Countdown, both keen to help community projects. Bunnings very generously donated gardening tools as well as the garden and growing mix.
A variety of Bunnings suppliers came on board including Daltons, Dulux and ES Plastics, and Bunnings team members also volunteered their time. Their generous assistance has seen the gardens transformed from an unused space to an active garden. Countdown have offered assistance once the gardens are ready to harvest with their Garden to Table programme, which aims to get children learning how to harvest, prepare and share fresh, seasonal food.
The result of these partnerships and their generosity saw the original budget more than tripling in dollar value, and developed an ideal partnership for the school far beyond Westhaven Rotary’s original expectations. Rotarians Tom and Trevor were the main driving force with this project. It was a great success all around and all involved are proud of their achievement.