Kaitaia-Mangonui, Te Kao

42 days ago

Covid-19; NRC preparing for next phase of response

Alison Shrigley Reporter from The Bay Chronicle

The Northland Regional Council (NRC) says it is doing all it can to ensure it’s ready when the nation enters the next phase of the central government response to the Covid-19 pandemic next week.

Council chair Penny Smart says just like the rest of the nation, councillors had adapted quickly to … View more
The Northland Regional Council (NRC) says it is doing all it can to ensure it’s ready when the nation enters the next phase of the central government response to the Covid-19 pandemic next week.

Council chair Penny Smart says just like the rest of the nation, councillors had adapted quickly to the Level Four lockdown restrictions and were now collectively turning their attention to how the Level Three status in place from Tuesday 28 April would impact the organisation.

The council’s crucial functions had continued throughout the pandemic, including environmental monitoring deemed critical to ensuring the health and wellbeing of Northland communities, ensuring maritime navigational safety, flood and drought monitoring and management and supporting critical Civil Defence work.

Civil Defence emergency management in the region is co-funded and staffed by all four local authorities (including the NRC) and team members have been liaising with regional stakeholders, emergency services, Northland DHB, key suppliers of food and water, volunteer groups, national agencies, iwi and the National Emergency Management Agency throughout both the pandemic and ongoing regional drought response.

As part of that, a team of Northland Civil Defence staff has been supported by staff from all four councils, working from a range of locations. Among a wide range of workstreams the Northland-wide Civil Defence effort has led or been involved in in recent weeks have been;

Making sure support is available to assist communities in a welfare capacity (things like ensuring vulnerable people have access to food, water, medicines and other essentials)

Assisting to ensure critical infrastructure like telecommunications, electricity, fuel supply, food distribution are maintained and kept running

Co-ordinating information flows to and from the national response and helping to ensure an accurate picture of the effects on Northland is conveyed.

Elsewhere, regional council subsidiary, Northland Inc, the North’s Regional Economic Development Agency and Regional Tourism Organisation, has been assisting in a business continuity capacity to help a variety of Northland companies impacted by the Level Four lockdown and would continue to do so under Level Three.

Chair Smart says While Level Three was effectively the start of central government’s intention to gradually and carefully ease the nation out of the most stringent pandemic-related restrictions, the regional council was determined to do its best to support those restrictions during the transitional period.

“You may notice increased numbers of regional council staff returning to the field under the Level Three restrictions, particularly in our core areas of environmental monitoring and enforcement, flood management, biosecurity land management activities.”

However, during Level Three councillors would continue to work remotely as this had proven to be an effective way for them to continue to conduct governance business. (Throughout Alert Level Four, regional councillors had continued to hold virtual weekly workshops and had also carried out their first regular monthly formal meeting (again remotely) this week (subs: Tues 21 April).)

As expected, a great deal of councillors’ current attention and energies were being expended ensuring the organisation’s Annual Plan – originally drawn up prior to the pandemic – reflected the very different forces and conditions (economic and other) now at work.

“As with many other local authorities, a formal period for public consultation on our Annual Plan was drawing to a close late last month (subs: March) just as the nation went into the Level Four lockdown.

Chair Smart says while the world had then changed more or less overnight, local authorities’ ongoing responsibilities to plan to provide a number of services essential to keeping people and communities healthy and safe had not.

“We’ve accepted a number of late submissions on our Annual Plan and the very real concerns our communities have about Covid-19’s impact are being factored into our considerations.”

The council had already brought forward its planned meeting to consider submissions and adopt its Annual Plan and – after initially hoping to do this early next week (subs: 28 April) – the associated financial complexities meant this would now happen early next month (subs: May), still several weeks earlier than originally planned.

Chair Smart reiterated the rescheduling was intended to provide Northlanders with all the certainty it could; no small feat considering the operating landscape was evolving rapidly and in some cases, changing by the day.

She said much of the spending originally proposed had been intended to maintain the council’s long-term focus on helping native life flourish, caring for water and protecting communities from flood risk.

While it was always a difficult balancing act for local government in terms of desired outcomes versus affordability, getting that balance right was even more critical in the current environment and involved considerable work at both a governance and staff level.

Councillors would keep the public fully informed on their plans (including around rates) going forward and wanted to reassure the community they had heard its calls for financial constraint.

“However, while we appreciate rates bills are just one of a number of critical financial considerations for people, if rates are not paid our region’s ability to collectively recover from this pandemic will be less rapid, harder and even more expensive next year.”

At this point, the advice from the regional council was still for those experiencing financial hardship to contact their local district council (which collected regional council rates on its behalf) to discuss their circumstances and arrange a payment.

Councillors also appreciated the economic support Central Government had already delivered to Northland and Northlanders in various ways and the way people in the region had worked – and continued to work – to support each other through the pandemic.

“Regional council has continued to engage strongly with central government on behalf of our region to ensure we get our fair share of its available funding to ensure our regional economic can recover as quickly as possible post-Covid.

Finally, councillors urged people to heed central government’s request to stay home, stay safe, look after each other and stay up to date with official guidance at www.covid19.govt.nz...

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42 days ago

Covid-19; NRC preparing for next phase of response

Alison Shrigley Reporter from Northern News

The Northland Regional Council (NRC) says it is doing all it can to ensure it’s ready when the nation enters the next phase of the central government response to the Covid-19 pandemic next week.

Council chair Penny Smart says just like the rest of the nation, councillors had adapted quickly to … View more
The Northland Regional Council (NRC) says it is doing all it can to ensure it’s ready when the nation enters the next phase of the central government response to the Covid-19 pandemic next week.

Council chair Penny Smart says just like the rest of the nation, councillors had adapted quickly to the Level Four lockdown restrictions and were now collectively turning their attention to how the Level Three status in place from Tuesday 28 April would impact the organisation.

The council’s crucial functions had continued throughout the pandemic, including environmental monitoring deemed critical to ensuring the health and wellbeing of Northland communities, ensuring maritime navigational safety, flood and drought monitoring and management and supporting critical Civil Defence work.

Civil Defence emergency management in the region is co-funded and staffed by all four local authorities (including the NRC) and team members have been liaising with regional stakeholders, emergency services, Northland DHB, key suppliers of food and water, volunteer groups, national agencies, iwi and the National Emergency Management Agency throughout both the pandemic and ongoing regional drought response.

As part of that, a team of Northland Civil Defence staff has been supported by staff from all four councils, working from a range of locations. Among a wide range of workstreams the Northland-wide Civil Defence effort has led or been involved in in recent weeks have been;

Making sure support is available to assist communities in a welfare capacity (things like ensuring vulnerable people have access to food, water, medicines and other essentials)

Assisting to ensure critical infrastructure like telecommunications, electricity, fuel supply, food distribution are maintained and kept running

Co-ordinating information flows to and from the national response and helping to ensure an accurate picture of the effects on Northland is conveyed.

Elsewhere, regional council subsidiary, Northland Inc, the North’s Regional Economic Development Agency and Regional Tourism Organisation, has been assisting in a business continuity capacity to help a variety of Northland companies impacted by the Level Four lockdown and would continue to do so under Level Three.

Chair Smart says While Level Three was effectively the start of central government’s intention to gradually and carefully ease the nation out of the most stringent pandemic-related restrictions, the regional council was determined to do its best to support those restrictions during the transitional period.

“You may notice increased numbers of regional council staff returning to the field under the Level Three restrictions, particularly in our core areas of environmental monitoring and enforcement, flood management, biosecurity land management activities.”

However, during Level Three councillors would continue to work remotely as this had proven to be an effective way for them to continue to conduct governance business. (Throughout Alert Level Four, regional councillors had continued to hold virtual weekly workshops and had also carried out their first regular monthly formal meeting (again remotely) this week (subs: Tues 21 April).)

As expected, a great deal of councillors’ current attention and energies were being expended ensuring the organisation’s Annual Plan – originally drawn up prior to the pandemic – reflected the very different forces and conditions (economic and other) now at work.

“As with many other local authorities, a formal period for public consultation on our Annual Plan was drawing to a close late last month (subs: March) just as the nation went into the Level Four lockdown.

Chair Smart says while the world had then changed more or less overnight, local authorities’ ongoing responsibilities to plan to provide a number of services essential to keeping people and communities healthy and safe had not.

“We’ve accepted a number of late submissions on our Annual Plan and the very real concerns our communities have about Covid-19’s impact are being factored into our considerations.”

The council had already brought forward its planned meeting to consider submissions and adopt its Annual Plan and – after initially hoping to do this early next week (subs: 28 April) – the associated financial complexities meant this would now happen early next month (subs: May), still several weeks earlier than originally planned.

Chair Smart reiterated the rescheduling was intended to provide Northlanders with all the certainty it could; no small feat considering the operating landscape was evolving rapidly and in some cases, changing by the day.

She said much of the spending originally proposed had been intended to maintain the council’s long-term focus on helping native life flourish, caring for water and protecting communities from flood risk.

While it was always a difficult balancing act for local government in terms of desired outcomes versus affordability, getting that balance right was even more critical in the current environment and involved considerable work at both a governance and staff level.

Councillors would keep the public fully informed on their plans (including around rates) going forward and wanted to reassure the community they had heard its calls for financial constraint.

“However, while we appreciate rates bills are just one of a number of critical financial considerations for people, if rates are not paid our region’s ability to collectively recover from this pandemic will be less rapid, harder and even more expensive next year.”

At this point, the advice from the regional council was still for those experiencing financial hardship to contact their local district council (which collected regional council rates on its behalf) to discuss their circumstances and arrange a payment.

Councillors also appreciated the economic support Central Government had already delivered to Northland and Northlanders in various ways and the way people in the region had worked – and continued to work – to support each other through the pandemic.

“Regional council has continued to engage strongly with central government on behalf of our region to ensure we get our fair share of its available funding to ensure our regional economic can recover as quickly as possible post-Covid.

Finally, councillors urged people to heed central government’s request to stay home, stay safe, look after each other and stay up to date with official guidance at www.covid19.govt.nz...

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43 days ago

Rural Broadband free for 2 months

2Degrees

Northland, you’ll be off and racing with 2degrees speedy new Rural Broadband, and we want you to take it for a Test Drive on us, no strings attached. You’ll even get a free modem to trial.

If you stick around we’ll sweeten things up with a $200 joining credit on our 170GB … View more
Northland, you’ll be off and racing with 2degrees speedy new Rural Broadband, and we want you to take it for a Test Drive on us, no strings attached. You’ll even get a free modem to trial.

If you stick around we’ll sweeten things up with a $200 joining credit on our 170GB Rural Broadband Plans for your home or business. Just $85/month incl GST on a 12 month term.

Give our NZ based team a call on 0800 022 202.
Find out more

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43 days ago

Manage My Health

The Doctors Kerikeri

The Doctors Kerikeri strive to keep our community informed and healthy.

We are preparing for Flu season 2020. To avoid the spread of flu we would like to take this opportunity to remind our community about preventable measures every day. Simple actions such as washing your hands or staying home … View more
The Doctors Kerikeri strive to keep our community informed and healthy.

We are preparing for Flu season 2020. To avoid the spread of flu we would like to take this opportunity to remind our community about preventable measures every day. Simple actions such as washing your hands or staying home from work and/or school
when feeling unwell reduces the spread of germs.

If you do become unwell please CALL THE MEDICAL CENTRE FIRST before presenting at the practice. You will be triaged and helped over the phone by one of our clinical staff. If you do need to come into the practice, please follow instructions given to you by our team. This is to ensure the best care for you and others attending the medical centre.

For information regarding COVID19 (Coronavirus) please call the HELP LINE 0800 358 5453

Phone: 09-407 7777
Address: 4 Homestead Road, Kerikeri 0230
Find out more

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43 days ago

Anzac Day 2020: Cut-out poppy for your Bubble

The Team from Neighbourly.co.nz

Anzac Day is being celebrated differently this year, with virtual services and online events, all from our own living rooms, balconies and driveways. Download this pdf of a poppy, by award-winning illustrator Sharon Murdoch, to print off and stick in a front window - To show that even in lockdown, … View moreAnzac Day is being celebrated differently this year, with virtual services and online events, all from our own living rooms, balconies and driveways. Download this pdf of a poppy, by award-winning illustrator Sharon Murdoch, to print off and stick in a front window - To show that even in lockdown, in our small bubbles, we shall not forget. That we can still say thank you for the sacrifices, we can still pay tribute to the bravery of so many.

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45 days ago

First-home buyers - new or pre-loved?

Colleen Hawkes Reporter from Homed

As a first-home buyer it pays to weigh up your options to see whether buying new or buying 'character' is best for you.

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43 days ago

Four $3000 NRC scholarship winners named

Alison Shrigley Reporter from The Bay Chronicle

The Northland Regional Council has named the four winners of its inaugural ‘Tū i teora Scholarship’ programme; Courtney Sanson, Katherine (Katarina) Tautuhi, Huia Webby and Zane Williams.

The council’s Deputy Chair Justin Blaikie says the scholarships aim to support students studying or … View more
The Northland Regional Council has named the four winners of its inaugural ‘Tū i teora Scholarship’ programme; Courtney Sanson, Katherine (Katarina) Tautuhi, Huia Webby and Zane Williams.

The council’s Deputy Chair Justin Blaikie says the scholarships aim to support students studying or training in areas that align with council’s focus and mission of ‘working together to create a healthy environment, strong economy and resilient communities’.

They also aim to build Māori capacity within Te Taitokerau and provide opportunities for further education, with two earmarked for Māori who whakapapa (share a genealogical connection) to Te Taitokerau.”

Councillor Blaikie says while the scholarships were an existing initiative and applications had closed before central government introduced its Covid-19 pandemic response, they would hopefully be of even more practical value to recipients given the impact the pandemic was having on tertiary studies.

The application official period for the scholarships ended in mid-February, with 72 applications, three-quarters of which were from Māori who whakapapa to Te Taitokerau.

Over recent weeks – including as the country moved into Level Four lockdown – those applications had been reviewed by a four-strong selection panel* which had met remotely earlier this month (subs: April) to carry out judging.

*(Selection panel members were Te Tai Tokerau Māori and Council (TTMAC) Working Party representative Georgina Connelly (of Te Uri O Hau Settlement Trust) and regional council staff Lorna Douglas (Eastern Coast Land Manager), Cathy Erstich (Community Engagement Manager) and Auriole Ruka (Maori Engagement Manager).

Councillor Blaikie says the panel was unanimous in its selection of the four winners, who represent a diverse range of backgrounds and career study paths.

“The winners have now been informed and regional councillors have been briefed on their success. My fellow councillors and I congratulate them and acknowledge the very important role they – and indeed all those who applied or are engaged in tertiary studies – will have to play in our region’s collective future.”

Winners (alphabetically by surname) are:

Courtney Sanson; from Tautoro, near Kaikohe (Ngapuhi/Te Rarawa).
Has a Bachelor of Science (Earth Sciences) going on to Master of
Environmental Sciences (Waikato University) focusing on water quality

 Katherine (Katarina) Tautuhi; from Kaipara (Te Uri o Hau/Ngati Porou/Te Rarawa). Katarina has a Bachelor of Mātauranga Māori with a focus on environmental issues within Tai Tokerau. Currently studying towards a Masters of Indigenous Studies at Te Whare Wānanga o Awanuiārangi with a focus on Māori worldview of Te Ao Tūroa, the environment

 Huia Webby; from Whangarei (2018 Whangarei Girls High graduate).

Studying Bachelor of Science majoring in marine (Wellington University) - entering second year of studies.

 Zane Williams; from Whangarei (2017 Kamo High graduate).
Studying for Bachelor of AgriCommerce (Massey University)

Further information on the winners – and the scholarships themselves – will be available shortly from the council’s website: www.nrc.govt.nz......

Caption for ‘Huia Webby Copyright: Victoria University of Wellington - 20190900’

A supplied, pre-pandemic lockdown image of one of the four Tū i te ora Scholarship winners Huia Webby. (Photocredit: Victoria University of Wellington (VUW) Image Service

Caption for ‘Justin Blaikie (P) - 20191029’

Deputy Chair Justin Blaikie…Northlanders continuing their tertiary studies – despite the current pandemic response – will have an important role to play in future and the inaugural ‘Tū i te ora Scholarship’ winners especially so.

43 days ago

Four $3000 NRC scholarship winners named

Alison Shrigley Reporter from Northern News

The Northland Regional Council has named the four winners of its inaugural ‘Tū i teora Scholarship’ programme; Courtney Sanson, Katherine (Katarina) Tautuhi, Huia Webby and Zane Williams.

The council’s Deputy Chair Justin Blaikie says the scholarships aim to support students studying or … View more
The Northland Regional Council has named the four winners of its inaugural ‘Tū i teora Scholarship’ programme; Courtney Sanson, Katherine (Katarina) Tautuhi, Huia Webby and Zane Williams.

The council’s Deputy Chair Justin Blaikie says the scholarships aim to support students studying or training in areas that align with council’s focus and mission of ‘working together to create a healthy environment, strong economy and resilient communities’.

They also aim to build Māori capacity within Te Taitokerau and provide opportunities for further education, with two earmarked for Māori who whakapapa (share a genealogical connection) to Te Taitokerau.”

Councillor Blaikie says while the scholarships were an existing initiative and applications had closed before central government introduced its Covid-19 pandemic response, they would hopefully be of even more practical value to recipients given the impact the pandemic was having on tertiary studies.

The application official period for the scholarships ended in mid-February, with 72 applications, three-quarters of which were from Māori who whakapapa to Te Taitokerau.

Over recent weeks – including as the country moved into Level Four lockdown – those applications had been reviewed by a four-strong selection panel* which had met remotely earlier this month (subs: April) to carry out judging.

*(Selection panel members were Te Tai Tokerau Māori and Council (TTMAC) Working Party representative Georgina Connelly (of Te Uri O Hau Settlement Trust) and regional council staff Lorna Douglas (Eastern Coast Land Manager), Cathy Erstich (Community Engagement Manager) and Auriole Ruka (Maori Engagement Manager).

Councillor Blaikie says the panel was unanimous in its selection of the four winners, who represent a diverse range of backgrounds and career study paths.

“The winners have now been informed and regional councillors have been briefed on their success. My fellow councillors and I congratulate them and acknowledge the very important role they – and indeed all those who applied or are engaged in tertiary studies – will have to play in our region’s collective future.”

Winners (alphabetically by surname) are:
Courtney Sanson; from Tautoro, near Kaikohe (Ngapuhi/Te Rarawa).
Has a Bachelor of Science (Earth Sciences) going on to Master of
Environmental Sciences (Waikato University) focusing on water quality

 Katherine (Katarina) Tautuhi; from Kaipara (Te Uri o Hau/Ngati Porou/Te Rarawa). Katarina has a Bachelor of Mātauranga Māori with a focus on environmental issues within Tai Tokerau. Currently studying towards a Masters of Indigenous Studies at Te Whare Wānanga o Awanuiārangi with a focus on Māori worldview of Te Ao Tūroa, the environment

 Huia Webby; from Whangarei (2018 Whangarei Girls High graduate).
Studying Bachelor of Science majoring in marine (Wellington University) - entering second year of studies.

 Zane Williams; from Whangarei (2017 Kamo High graduate).
Studying for Bachelor of AgriCommerce (Massey University)

Further information on the winners – and the scholarships themselves – will be available shortly from the council’s website: www.nrc.govt.nz...

Caption for ‘Huia Webby Copyright: Victoria University of Wellington - 20190900’
A supplied, pre-pandemic lockdown image of one of the four Tū i te ora Scholarship winners Huia Webby. (Photocredit: Victoria University of Wellington (VUW) Image Service

Caption for ‘Justin Blaikie (P) - 20191029’
Deputy Chair Justin Blaikie…Northlanders continuing their tertiary studies – despite the current pandemic response – will have an important role to play in future and the inaugural ‘Tū i te ora Scholarship’ winners especially so.

45 days ago

Please share an ANZAC story with us Northland...

RSA

Dear Northland - ANZAC Day will look a little different for us this year - however there are many ways for you to acknowledge the incredible men and women who have served our communities and given their lives for our country.

We invite you to share a memory or photo to commemorate this special … View more
Dear Northland - ANZAC Day will look a little different for us this year - however there are many ways for you to acknowledge the incredible men and women who have served our communities and given their lives for our country.

We invite you to share a memory or photo to commemorate this special day on Neighbourly below. It could be a story of a member in your family who served - or perhaps the way you and your family celebrate ANZAC Day each year. (It might even be a photo of your freshly baked can't be-beaten ANZAC cookies).

We also invite you to take part in Stand at Dawn and join us at 6:00 am on Saturday 25 April. Stand at your letterbox, at the front door, in your lounge rooms, balconies, in your driveway. Wherever you are in the world, stand with us and take a moment to remember our fallen – but please stay within your ‘bubble’.

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43 days ago

A note from Noel Leeming

Noel Leeming

We’ve been privileged to help Kiwis get the essentials needed to work, study, and stay connected. It’s led to huge demand and some orders are taking longer to deliver. We’d really like to apologise to the customers who’ve experienced these delays.

To help get it sorted faster we’ve … View more
We’ve been privileged to help Kiwis get the essentials needed to work, study, and stay connected. It’s led to huge demand and some orders are taking longer to deliver. We’d really like to apologise to the customers who’ve experienced these delays.

To help get it sorted faster we’ve quadrupled our Customer Care team, and expanded our order fulfilment network so we can get thousands more orders delivered each day. Plus our remote Tech Solutions service will be free until May 11 to lend customers a hand with technology advice or setting up.

Thanks for your patience, everyone. We’re getting there.
Find out more

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44 days ago

Awanuiārangi COVID-19 Update!

Te Whare Wānanga o Awanuiārangi

Whangarei Campus

Tēnā koutou katoa. Given the circumstances regarding COVID-19, teaching and delivery of Te Whare Wānanga o Awanuiārangi programmes will differ from normal over the coming weeks or months.

We will keep staff, students and our wider community updated on this as best we can.… View more
Whangarei Campus

Tēnā koutou katoa. Given the circumstances regarding COVID-19, teaching and delivery of Te Whare Wānanga o Awanuiārangi programmes will differ from normal over the coming weeks or months.

We will keep staff, students and our wider community updated on this as best we can.

We urge students to please stay enrolled. Studylink payments of allowances and loans will continue as normal.

Follow our facebook page and visit our COVID-19 webpage to keep updated. We appreciate your patience.

Ngā manaakitanga, keep safe.
Learn more

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44 days ago

We're keen to hear about your health care

Kelly Dennett Reporter from Sunday Star Times

The Sunday Star-Times is looking to speak to a patient who has recently had some experience of the health system - either receiving treatment in a hospital or clinic or at an ED - and would be willing to talk about their experience, and how it could have been made better, either by shorter wait … View moreThe Sunday Star-Times is looking to speak to a patient who has recently had some experience of the health system - either receiving treatment in a hospital or clinic or at an ED - and would be willing to talk about their experience, and how it could have been made better, either by shorter wait times, better communication or level of care. We'd need you to be happy to be identified and photographed (from a distance). If you think you can help, please email senior journalist Andrea Vance on andrea.vance@stuff.co.nz.

50 days ago

Single mum's tiny house lockdown

Colleen Hawkes Reporter from Homed

Following on from yesterday's tiny house story, here's single mum Shaye sharing her experience in isolation

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52 days ago

All eyes on the tiny house

Colleen Hawkes Reporter from Homed

Tiny house builders have had a surge in interest during the lockdown, some from families that are 'herding'

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45 days ago

Stick to your bubble, not your couch - join Red Cross Virtual Tour

Red Cross Communications from Red Cross - Far North Service Centre

During COVID-19 lockdowns overseas, we've seen someone run a half marathon on a tiny balcony and the distance of Everest up and down a staircase. What will we see next in New Zealand!?

We are an active country and we like to get outdoors in our beautiful landscapes. But we know that right now… View more
During COVID-19 lockdowns overseas, we've seen someone run a half marathon on a tiny balcony and the distance of Everest up and down a staircase. What will we see next in New Zealand!?

We are an active country and we like to get outdoors in our beautiful landscapes. But we know that right now we must #stayhomesavelives. Here is a way that you can still keep active in your own home, and still enjoy the beautiful scenery that we have here in Aotearoa! ? #RedCrossVirtualTour

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