During the time we spent on the Coast the people of NZ and Greymouth have been unstinting in their support, kindness and generosity of spirit towards the workers’ and contractors’ families.
On our arrival friends of my brother provided accommodation to the family for several weeks and when we needed a second car they delivered a vehicle immediately for our use. But it was not just these larger more obvious offers of help that were so meaningful.
When I arrived my only pair of shoes fell apart so I resorted to using my brother’s jandals, which were 3 sizes too big. When one of Conrad’s friends found out they took my shoes away and returned them within an hour, repaired. Everyone wanted to do something to help. …
Donna at Kiwibank in Greymouth was amazing and without her support we would have struggled to manage the household finances in my brother’s absence.
In the initial days of waiting Air New Zealand provided a staff member for every family to assist them with the burden of the seemingly endless small tasks that filled our days and required decisions. This help was invaluable in removing the strain and pressure of arranging flights, accommodation and accessing the myriad offers of support provided by New Zealand companies.
Well done Kiwibank and Air New Zealand.
Later that night it seemed as if the whole of New Zealand had mobilised to provide any assistance they could, people who had never met my brother offered accommodation, meals and to pick family members up from the airport, baskets of food, supermarket vouchers, cash. There seemed to be no end to the generosity. Even kindergarten children baked biscuits and couriered them to the families in Greymouth.
If it was not for the compassion of my employer and the donations of fellow staff and workmates my wife and I would not have been able to dedicate two weeks to helping my brother’s children and providing support to them where we could.
No one should ever have to experience the intensity of the days while we waited and then the desolation as we realised our loved ones would not be returning to us, however the selflessness, generosity and compassion of the people of Greymouth and New Zealand has been humbling and I would like to publicly thank those people and companies who assisted us.
A very moving letter.