The initiative involved a 14-day visit to the school from 12 New Zealand volunteers to support reconstruction, teaching and other school activities.
Gracegate Centre Directions Coach Urzalia Rea said the contribution of the goals by New Zealand sports equipment provider Packaworld had been received with great enthusiasm by teachers and students alike.
“They love the goals. It was great to see how the kids reacted. Usually they just put their shoes down to make goals, so they were really excited. When we inflated the goals, all the kids ran down and took turns carrying them. It was really cute.”
The school also has a creche for children under five. The creche is housed in a large tent while the school is being rebuilt, and this was temporarily turned into an impromptu football pitch using the goals during the visit, much to the delight of the children.
Ms Rea said sport is really important to the children of the region, many of whom live off the central power grid and do not have access to electronic entertainment such as television and gaming systems.
“There’s no power at the village, although there is a generator that’s used for power tools. So these kids don’t have power to play Xbox or anything, they just stay out and play sport until it gets dark.”
She said the children had loved the football coaching sessions during her visit, and the teachers had loved the fact the goals could be easily deflated and packed away.
“Being able to pack them away and keep them in a corner of a classroom tent was perfect. The teachers thought we had just brought the goals along to run some activities, so when we said the goals were sent over by Packaworld for them to keep they got quite emotional.”
This was Gracegate’s second visit to Fulton Primary School as part of the rebuild initiative. This visit resulted in the completion of three constructed classrooms, that the team started work on last year.
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