A special fundraising dinner has raised $115,000 to help ensure that no Marlborough children miss out on a trip to Mistletoe Bay.
It’s a classic Kiwi rite of passage- a childhood trip to school camp but for some families, it’s out of reach financially.
But the Mistletoe Foundation has raised funds to ensure no youngsters will miss out.
The foundation held a dinner last week at the bay, in Queen Charlotte Sound near Onahau Bay.
Foundation chairman and Renwick School principal Simon Heath says help will be on offer for students who might not be able to afford to go.
“Principals of schools sending students to camps at Mistletoe Bay are now assured of being able to access help for students who might not otherwise be able to afford to go to camp and have the Mistletoe Bay experience,” he says.
The Foundation has raised $300,000 which will now be invested, and scholarships will be granted to students each year.
The dinner was created by the team at Arbour restaurant, and hosted by the Mistletoe Charitable Foundation’s patron Dame Lowell Goddard QC along with the Mistletoe Bay Trust’s patrons Sir Stephen and Lady Tindall.
About 40 people took part in the “Magic at Mistletoe” event, taking a Marlborough Tour Company bus to Picton, and then the Marlborough Tour Company vessel Odyssea to Mistletoe Bay.
Sir Stephen spoke to guests about his experience as patron of the Mistletoe Bay Trust for the last ten years.
“This truly is an example for sustainability that we need to continue to nurture,” he says.
Simon says that spending time at the camp was “life-changing.”
“As a school principal myself, I know that the time spent at the bay on camp, doing activities with classmates and learning valuable lessons, can be life-changing for our young people, and they need that experience now more than ever,” he says.