Manukau Courier : January 28th 2011
7 MANUKAU COURIER, JANUARY 28, 2011 NEWS New pool making a splash with users New look: Inside the new Norman Kirk Memorial Pool complex, swimmers are spoilt for choice. By MELISSA KINEALY ' It's a facility the whole community will be proud of. ' Mayor Len Brown Having fun in the water will be easier with the opening of a pool complex at the heart of a community. The upgraded Norman Kirk Memorial Pools in Otara were officially opened on Wednesday by mayor Len Brown. The new complex features modern changing facilities, a toddler s pool, a leisure and learn-to-swim pool, a four- lane 25-metre lap pool and a large spa and sauna. And its redevelopment is significant, with the former Manukau City Council spending $11 million and 13 months bringing it up to standard. The outdoor 33.3-metre pool has been retained with improvements to the sur- rounding grounds. The design was developed through community work- shops and in consultation with the Otara Community Board, Mr Brown says. I think the end product is something that everyone who contributed their thoughts and ideas can be proud of -- it s a facility the whole com- munity will be proud of. The new complex is part of the Otara Leisure Centre and takes the place of the old indoor pool facilities which have been demolished. Places like this encourage more people to learn to be safe in the water, be active and even just give kids some- thing interesting and fun to do, he says. We are a water nation and confidence and fun in the water is something our kids need to know. He called on the young members of the crowd to help unveil the plaque at the open- ing. Manukau Leisure east area manager Michael Groom says it s an awesome facility with the whole concept being designed around needs for the community and health. Inside there s ramp access into the lap pool, a disabled lift into the large spa area, bright colours and thatching over panels to reflect a Pacific feel, water features and the latest filtration system, he says. Former Otara community board chairman Efu Koka says the new complex is very important to the community and it ll uplift the spirits of our young ones . Recycling for refugees initiative is on a roll Second chance: A local action day has seen a project to restore and donate old bikes come to fruition. From left: Diana Swarbrick, Josca Craig-Smith, Tim White and Pippa Coom. Photo: JASON OXENHAM By HANNAH SPYKSMA Unused bicycles are getting a chance for one more ride, thanks to a project aimed at giving back to communities. Three organisations have come together to help recycle old bikes and are donating the finished goods to refugees living in Auckland. We just met in the middle and decided it was a good thing to do, says Tim White of T White Bikes. He s been working to fix up bikes donated by Cycle Action Auckland and is passing them on to the Mangere Refu- gee Resettlement Centre. Those bikes would have basically gone to the dump -- it s really good to give them a second life, Mr White says. When he was approached by Cycle Action Auckland in October, the keen cyclist didn t hesitate to offer his workshop for repairs. Likewise, when Diana Swarbrick got wind of the project, she knew she could help at her end. The Refugees as Survivors administration manager is responsible for delegating resources and is more than happy to have found a home for the pre-loved sets of wheels. I m sure the people who these bikes go to will be over the moon. The feedback I get is that if you re a refugee and you study, for example, you haven t got enough money to afford any transport, she says. Mrs Swarbrick says it is a fantastic idea because many refugees are used to cycling in their home countries. The initial project came about during 10/10/10 local action day. Aimed at getting communities from around the world to work towards posi- tive climate change action, the day was a chance for Cycle Action Auckland to hold its big bike fix-up. We knew there would be bikes brought along that wouldn t get used again and just thought: Who could we donate spare ones to , mem- ber Pippa Coom says. Mr White and his colleague Josca Craig-Smith have been working to fix the bikes and say it is important for com- munity retailers to get involved with these kinds of projects. It s just really good to recycle, Mr Craig-Smith says. It s amazing how many bike parts go to waste other- wise. We like to collect stuff and it s great to be able to finally hand a finished product over to the right place, Mr Craig- Smith says. Refugees as Survivors is also looking for people to donate old or unused helmets. Email Mrs Swarbrick at firstname.lastname@example.org or phone her on 270-0870.
January 27th 2011
February 1st 2011