A message from Mayor Helen - April 2018

(Posted on: May 1)

Recently there have some special celebrations which highlight the key in any vibrant community - its people. The willingness of good people to participate, give their time voluntarily and care about each other is in my view, the glue that holds our great community together.

The Feilding Rugby Club 140 year celebration weekend was a testament to this, as reading the history of this club you can’t help but sense the commitment and strength of the people involved over the years.

From that first rugby game played on 13th July 1878 going down in history as the first rugby game ever played in Manawatu, the Club surviving after going into recess not once, but twice due to players serving their country in two world wars, several Club name changes, several changes in the playing strip colours, including handing over the silver fern brand to our national team and plenty of threats over the years from new competing clubs.

The success of this club has been and still is - the people who make up the Club - the players, the coaches, the supporters, the sponsors, the volunteers and the families who all have contributed and continue to do their bit to keep the Feilding Rugby Club alive and thriving.

Then there was the 130 year celebration of our Feilding Volunteer Fire Brigade, one of the oldest brigades in NZ. The role of our fire service has changed over the years from solely fighting fires to attending car crashes, medical events and rescue efforts as well as fires. This takes a special type of volunteer who is able to deal mentally and physically with being involved in a range of major incidents. It also needs the support of willing employers to release their staff when required for duty and the support of families and the community to look after their wellbeing. We commend and thank our volunteers.

These are good examples of our people in action and highlight the need for local council to support them. It’s great to see that our new government is looking to reinstate the four aspects of community wellbeing into the role of local councils. These are social, economic, environmental and cultural outcomes for our communities. Yes providing core services is an important part of Council but so is fostering liveable, vibrant and well-connected communities.

Our Council is currently reviewing all of its community development activities, with the intention to move and adopt a new community development strategy that is relevant to our district and community. The change and review is to identify what our community’s goals are and how Council can best go about achieving them in partnership with our many community groups and organisations.

As a community, we get another opportunity on ANZAC day to remember those who gave, and still give their lives, in conflict around the world so that we can live in relative peace in our wonderful country. It reminds us to look after our mates, cherish our homes, our neighbours and our families.

I will be attending the Feilding, Sanson and Halcombe services so I look forward to seeing you there.

Helen Worboys