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Christchurch City Scene
June 2003

Lead Stories

Funding changes

Some quality control for Chch compassion

Have your say on dog control

Road plan for north considered

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Some quality control for Chch compassion


One of the greatest things about Christchurch is the way that we look after our own.

We are a compassionate city that takes pride in trying to give everyone their best shot at enjoying life and reaching their full potential.

It is one of the most powerful and profound qualities of Christchurch as a city; generosity of spirit is a great thing. Itís a tradition that cuts across normal barriers of class, income and political affiliation to stand out as a uniquely Christchurch quality.

At the recent opening of our magnificent new Art Gallery I made the point that we enjoy the city we have because of the generosity between the generations that has made this such a great city.

That is why we have such superb facilities as Hagley Park, the Arts Centre, the Museum and now the new Christchurch Art Gallery.

We have these wonderful resources because those before us have been brave enough to look ahead into the future and actively care for that future ó a tradition weíve carried on with our wonderful new Art Gallery.

These built and natural assets have added greatly to our way of life as a city. They also have the virtue of being easy to measure and maintain.

People are a much harder proposition. Yet it is people that are ultimately the purpose of any city. It might sound simplistic but it is a reality thatís easy to lose sight of in the midst of running a city.

We owe it to ourselves to make sure that, as far as we can, we apply the same courage and high standards to community funding as we do to buildings and other public assets.

The best way to ensure that our proud tradition of generosity and community support stays in robust good health is to take a fresh look at it and make sure that it is still working well.

We need to impose high standards of quality control on compassion. We need to do that from the start point of acknowledging that good community work can produce amazing results and affirming the Councilís continuing support for the sector.

As a former community worker who helped set up Kaikouraís world-class Whalewatch I am acutely aware of how massively effective good community work can prove to be. It is an example of good community work that I will never forget.

It worked because, in part, we were willing to be bold and look for new ways of tackling apparently entrenched problems like unemployment and lack of opportunity.

It is the same sort of willingness we must aim for in the community projects we fund as a Council. The recent Community Funding Review that is now moving into action was developed to improve the efficiency of our community investment as a city.

As a Council I believe it is our right to insist that those proposing to get community funding be able to establish the worth of what they are doing. We must make sure that every dollar spent on community projects is put to the best use possible.

We have to make sure that we are doing the right things, the right way, through the right people.

Through a little quality control on compassion we will make sure our social investment in the community provides the best possible rate of return. The end result will be a stronger community sector, and a stronger city.

This page is not a current Christchurch City Council document. Please read our disclaimer.
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