Home' Advocate Communications : Fiordland Advocate 17 July 2009 Contents LOCAL NEWS
17 July, 2009 | Page 3
The Te Anau Childcare Centre is
going back in time to meet the
demands of the future. It’s only
15 years since the centre was
built, catering for 12 children with
three teachers. It now has 70 on
the roll, is licensed for 35 children
and has 21 staff.
“Everything’s too small,” manager
John Hellewell said.
The committee had decided
to start fundraising to extend
the existing building to better
accommodate the children and
staff – something they estimate
will cost well over $100,000.
The rapid increase in demand,
coupled with a waiting list for
permanent bookings, meant the
expansion plans would also aim to
enable to centre to be registered
to take on even more children.
“If we’re looking to the future
then it would be stupid not to
accommodate for more children,”
Mr Hellewell said.
To kick off the fundraising efforts,
the committee has decided to
resurrect one of its best-ever
money making activities. A
1980s-themed social night two
years ago was a huge success so
the formula was being revisited
with a different decade.
The 1970s night would be held
at the Fiordland Hotel on August
15. Tickets were $20 per person
and would include a continuous
supper and a DJ playing 1970s
music. A bar would be operating
and there would be prizes for the
Fundraising committee member
Sarah McDonald said they were
hoping the success of the last
themed night would result in a big
turnout and early indications were
that was the case.
“There’s a lot of people excited
about it already, she said.
Door sales would be available but
for catering purposes ticket sales
were encouraged. Tickets can be
bought from the childcare centre.
Everything’s too much of a squeeze at Te Anau centre for littlies
As Caroline Holland (left) and Laura Tonkin demonstrate, there’s barely
enough space for two in the Te Anau Childcare Centre’s staff office, let alone
the 21 who have to share it.
Minister for the Environment Nick Smith
and his family spent last Saturday at
Doubtful Sound on a field trip linked to his
annual meeting with the Fiordland Marine
Responsibility for the Guardians was
“an unusual little gem in my portfolio of
responsibilties,” he said.
In Parliament there was a saying that the
Minister of Conservation, a role held by Dr
Smith back in the 1990s, was responsible
for “the green stuff” while the Minister for
the Environment “gets to do the brown stuff,
and that’s sort of true”.
National had been supportive of the
Guardians in their embryonic stage in the
1990s. Back in Government, Dr Smith said
he was delighted to be able to now work
with them on substantive issues.
New Zealand did not have a choice between
being clean and green or prosperous, it
had to be able to do both, he said. To that
end the Government was employing a good
mix of economic and environmental policy,
pushing a strong collaborative agenda
across the environment portfolio, he said.
The Fiordland Marine Guardians
represented that sort of approach.
Conservation and environmental protection
had become a mainstream concern on
Minister pops in to meet ‘unusual little gem’
the Minister for
in Doubtful Sound
last Saturday. From
left: Mark Peychers,
Anne McDermott, Hon
Dr Nick Smith, Stewart
Bull, Alan Key, Jerry
Excell. In front: Ken
Grange (left) and Alan
More than $1 million will be spent over the next year
upgrading tourist facilities at Milford Sound and on the
The upgrade, anounced this week by the Milford Sound
Development Authority (MDA) includes the building of a
small scale hydro-electric power plant at Knobs Flat to
replace existing diesel generators, resealing of car-
parks at both Knobs Flat and Milford, and the replace-
ment of a floating berth at Milford.
MDA board chairman Jeff Grant said the upgrade
would ensure Milford Sound maintained its reputation
as New Zealand’s leading tourist attraction.
“Visitors have very high expectations when they come
to Milford Sound. We aim to provide an infrastructure
that is not only high quality, but also unobtrusive and
The MDA holds various concessions with the Depart-
ment of Conservation (DOC) to carry out tourism and
community related activities at Milford Sound and
Knobs Flat. These include wharves at Freshwater Ba-
sin, solid waste operations (refuse), sewerage convey-
ance, treatment and discharge, car parking and staff
Visitor numbers to Milford taking a scenic cruise have
grown from approx 213,887 in 1991 to 418,134 in the
last financial year. Approximately one third of all holiday
arrivals to New Zealand visit Milford Sound.
for Milford Sound
land but there was still a huge
challenge in applying that ethos at
sea. The Guardians were not only
making significant progress in that
area, they were doing so in a way
that was avoiding the polarisation
and discourse that had marred
environmental issues in New
Zealand in the past, Dr Smith said.
A “huge fan” of the Fiordland Marine
Guardians, he hinted the model may
well be replicated elsewhere.
The legislation required a review of
the Guardians be carried out next
year but he expected few changes as
During his visit, Dr Smith announced
the reappointment of three
Guardians. Alan Key, of Gore, and
Anne McDermott, of Invercargill, have
been appointed for a further three
years while Ngai Tahu representative
Stewart Bull, of Riverton, has been
appointed for a further four years.
He said he thoroughly enjoyed his
visit to Doubtful Sound and, because
it was the school holidays, was
thrilled to be able to bring his wife
Linley and their children Hazel, 11
and Logan, 8, to experience, albeit
briefly, what Fiordland had to offer.
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