When Heather from The Christchurch Aunties asks if your organisation would like jars of mosturiser, you just say yes and wait and see what arrives. What arrived, was boxes and boxes of Little Genie moisturiser. So what do we do with it and how far did it go?
To start with, we put one in every food parcel going out. Men and women all got a jar. But the moisturiser kept on coming and we decided to send it out further. Onto our FREE table it went! Anyone coming in could help themselves to a jar and the reactions were wonderful. So many people said “For free? Really? Can I take one for my Mum, my neighbour, my daughter, the teachers at school, the kindy staff?” Still the moisturiser kept arriving.
We offered it to every group that runs a program in our building. The Plunket 'Building Awesome Whanau' parents and staff took away a jar each. Craft Group, The Women’s Fellowship, Tai Chi, Appetite For Life, Senior Chef, Gentle Exercise, Kids Hub, Wonder Girls, the New Zealand Indoor Bowls group, our Community Lunch attendees, Nurse Maude . . . and still that moisturiser kept arriving.
Emma, one of our Partnership Community Workers, took it to schools and organisations she supports. Linwood College and Te Kupenga o Aranui school have a stash to hand out to anyone who needs a wee boost. They gave it to whanau, clients and colleagues. It made them feel like Santa, and thankful to be able to share a free gift. The recipients felt some disbelief that this little jar of magic was being given to them for free. They were grateful and thankful. It made them feel special and cherished. These organisations say that it is a privilege to be trusted with gifting this little thing to others. By sharing it with them we have strengthened our relationships and encouraged the feeling of community among us all.
The thing about this moisturiser is that giving a jar to someone who feels a bit low or just might need the pleasure of receiving a free gift, benefits both sides – the giving makes us just as happy as the person who receives it.
In this week of Mental Health Awareness it seems timely to acknowledge The Christchurch Aunties for allowing us to share this gift with others. These jars of happiness have gone far and wide, the ripple effect of giving has spread out so every party involved has felt the warmth and aroha that a gift can bring. We are so very fortunate to work in a field that allows us the endorphin rush of giving every day. Thank you so much to whoever sent all those jars to The Christchurch Aunties to distribute – you have no idea how much good has been achieved!
Aroha Nui, Dorothy.
Coordinator, Linwood Avenue Community Corner Trust