February 24, 2011

What are we doing for Christchurch as Artists?

Hannah McKie   posted 24 Feb 2011, 12:10 AM / edited 24 Feb 2011, 08:44 AM


Prior to the last few days there’s been a lot of negativity springing up in creative communities this year. Talk through clenched teeth about cuts to the artist benefit, to arts boards, to arts funding in general alongside a general lack of respect from powers that be concerning the work artists do, whether in a paid or unpaid capacity.

I know with recent events in Christchurch a lot of us are hurting, and our communities are hurting with many still waiting to hear from family and friends. Even those without immediate ties to Christchurch can’t help feeling for a city that’s part of the heart of this country; a city that’s heart is being battered and broken.

Collections are springing up around the country – city missions, the Salvation army, local churches and charities – all non-perishable items have been welcomed alongside blankets and clothing. Many in Wellington are clearing out their spare rooms in anticipation. My sister phoned this afternoon and I asked her to pick up the baby and get on a flight to Wellington. She burst into tears at the thought of being anywhere near a fault line. 

Besides blankets, buckets and baked beans, what can we as artists offer as artists to the people of Christchurch? Not to prove that artists are important, but because we’re artists and  people are important. As a Page Left producer I’d be happy to organize/co-ordinate efforts if anyone had any suggestions? Free printed pages of poetry, short stories, scripts, graphic comics to entertain those camping out and sleeping by the roadsides on the outskirts of the city or in the farming areas like West Melton? Anything that can be delivered or included with the Salvation Army hand outs? Free entertainment for the kids capital E style? Free home stays for Christchurch practitioners? What can we offer without getting in the way?

Rita Baboon        posted 24 Feb 2011, 12:19 AM

Residents in Wellington can help by providing free accommodation to the estimated 1000 people expected to arrive today. Call (04) 801 4205 or email cd.welfare@wcc.govt.co.nz if you can help.

Man, hang in there chch xx

Kate Morris         posted 24 Feb 2011, 12:49 PM / edited 24 Feb 2011, 04:11 PM

TradeMe has a thorough list of support we can provide and resources we can draw on during the first phase of this awful disaster including places to make donations, where to list available accommodation etc…  http://www.trademe.co.nz/christchurch-earthquake-support 

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