Social skills, fun, bring group back


Mary Ross (pictured from left back), Lynda Tayles, Lois Hill, Colleen Inwood, Sue Green and ...
Mary Ross (pictured from left back), Lynda Tayles, Lois Hill, Colleen Inwood, Sue Green and (front) Patrice Ansell, Don Church, Ian Rankin and Michele Collis were among the sponsors, volunteers and members gathered for an Ashburton Mackenzie Group morning tea event.
Enjoying social skills in fun and supportive ways keep members of the Ashburton Mackenzie Group returning year after year.

The group, which has 20 members with a mix of intellectual disorders and some physical, has been running for 30 years, getting members together twice a week for events, activities and outings.

Member Michele Collis enjoys being involved. She has been attending the sessions and meeting up with her peers since the group started - her mother was a founding member and father took up a committee role as treasurer.

Ashburton Mackenzie Group co-ordinator Lynda Tayles said the group was initially set up by carers and parents wanting a respite care option in town but it has grown from there.

It's now a big part of the members' week and they are happy to be there.

"It's a happy and fun group,'' she said.

The group is run by a team made up of two paid staff and five volunteers who are able to keep the engines running with the support of local and national sponsors offering funding or donations.

The Mackenzie Charitable Foundation and County Lions were among some of those groups, businesses and organisations hosted during a sponsors morning tea event earlier this week at the Doris Linton Room at the Ashburton RSA.

Mrs Tayles said it was a chance to thank sponsors who had helped the group continue their service offering social support to its members.

Also thanked were the Ashburton RSA, Lions Foundation, COGS, Rotary, Ashburton Vintage Car Club, CMP, Talleys, Ashburton Courier, and Lotteries New Zealand.