• Howick and Pakuranga Times
Now in its 31st year, the club has supported hundreds of people who have dedicated their time and passions towards the community.
This year the club, which also donated $20,000 to local organisations, presented six awards to those who have made a difference.
• Natalie Paratene-Kiriona, pride of workmanship award: The 25-year-old apprentice prin-ter works for Auckland Packaging Company in East Tamaki. She received the award not just for her printing abilities, but more so because of her tenacity in overcoming obstacles. Natalie lost her sight in one eye aged two, and more recently overcame cancer. She was employed by Auckland Packaging after walking in off the street and asking to be taught printing. The award recognises how a positive attitude and determination can lead to success.
Cole Jackson, apprenticeship award: Cole attended Saint Kentigern College to Year 13 and is now employed by Dalton Electrical, soon to finish his electrical apprenticeship. Cole’s manager Bruce Dalton says it was evident from the start that Cole was good academically and practically. Cole has written programmes for machine controllers and has designed and built control panels. Last year, Cole was the top qualifier in Auckland in the Electrical Contractors Association Apprentice Challenge and came fourth in the nationals in Christchurch.
Sue Fox, vocational excellence award: Sue has been working as a consultant at the Pakuranga branch of the Farmers Trading Company for 34 years. Now a senior staff member, her personal customer service has made her an asset to the company, with many customers regarding her as family. The club says Sue has inspired many younger workers and leads a strong team.
Jeanette Waters, community service award: For the past 17 years, she has been well-known as the “graffiti watcher”. Mainly basing herself around Farm Cove and Half Moon Bay, Jeanette dedicates her time to painting over graffiti without any reimbursement.
David Gordon, community service award: David is the team leader of Botany Civil Defence team which has three teams from Howick, Pakuranga and Botany. He is training other volunteers in Manukau and is involved in the Botany Crime Watch Patrol.
Song Lam, community service award: She started the Language Corner in 1996 to teach English to new immigrants on a voluntary basis and has written 10 books. One covers Maori culture and history in Chinese. Song is also involved in environmental education as a trustee of the Chinese Conservation Education Trust and the Chinese Community Advisory group.