Home' Christchurch Mail : July 11th 2013 Contents 3
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Warmth of strangers
boosts blanket bank
WINTER WARMERS: New Plymouth hairdresser Shari Corbett Dwyer and her little helpers Briar Tarrant, 5, and Shayde
Hanover, 2, have been collecting bed linen for a Christchurch blanket bank.
Photo: MARK DWYER
By YVETTE BATTEN
NEEDY CHRISTCHURCH people
will be warm this winter thanks to
generous donations from the
Several weeks ago New Ply-
mouth woman Shari Corbett
Dwyer launched a campaign to
find blankets for the Christchurch
She d heard on the National
Radio that now, more than two
years after the devastating earth-
quake struck, demand for blan-
kets had not died down.
Mrs Corbett Dwyer decided to
do something about it and was
surprised by the response.
So many people gave so much.
It was great, she said.
We had to give up the garage
for two weeks and I had help with
some friends a couple of times.
It was floor to ceiling bags and
bags and bags and boxes and
Many people told Mrs Corbett
Dwyer that the collection had
given them a chance to clean out
All up she collected about 100
double blankets, 170 single blan-
kets, 40 pillows, 15 sleeping bags,
75 queen duvets and 45 single
duvets. That s not counting piles
of sheets and duvet covers, a blow
up bed, woollen underlays and
Some of them were unused and
still in their wrapping. I don t
know if people had gone and
Transport company Hooker
came on board and offered to
transport the donations to Christ-
church for free.
More than 14 pallets of manche-
ster, piled up more than a metre
high, hit the road.
Kilos go as eating
By ANNA PRICE
LOSER: Alisha Annan pruned more
than 24kg off her weight in 15 weeks
to claim the Biggest Loser title in
Rowley Active run by Rowley Ave
School teacher Susanna Muamua,
right, with measuring tape, and
colleague Tiresa Sio.
GORGEOUS GIRLS: Lotu Ausaga,
Caroline Motuiliu, Carroll Motuiliu and
Lusia Pousini, leaders for the Biggest
Loser weight loss challenge in Rowley
Ave School's community event.
A 36-YEAR-old of mother of three
has been crowned Biggest Loser
after shedding 24.1kg in 15 weeks
in the Rowley Avenue School chal-
lenge -- taking home $500.
Alisha Annan, now 74.1kg, said
the first week was the hardest.
I think my body went into
shock with all the healthy food
and exercise, she said.
But as the weeks went on, as
well as losing weight, I found I
wasn t so tired, I had lots more
I could think clearer and my
moods improved, much to my fam-
ily s delight.
I m really energetic, a totally
different person to what I was.
She said it s not over yet. She is
aiming for 58kg.
Her grandmother matched her
prize money dollar for dollar.
Buying a juicer and introducing
vegetable juice into her diet made
a huge difference to health and
energy levels, she said.
Ms Annan, a diabetic with rheu-
matoid arthritis, said eating heal-
thier foods had improved both
conditions to the point where my
dietitian asked for my juice recipe
so she could pass it on to other
Besides training sessions at the
school, she maintains a daily exer-
cise regime and even has an app
on her phone, C25K (couch to run-
Tusitepa Tuitea, of Riccarton,
came second, losing 21.3kg (20.25
per cent) and Asenati Motuiliu,
third, shedding 14.9kg (16.23 per
Forty people registered for the
challenge with 31 completing it.
Organiser, Rowley Ave teacher
Susanna Muamua, is rapt the
venture grabbed the imagination
of parents and staff as well as the
The challengers started with a
combined weight of 3254.4kg.
They finished 774kg lighter
weighing 2480.4kg (23.78 per cent
It was a teacher s eye view of
children s lunch boxes that spar-
ked the challenge in a new take on
Ms Muamua came up with the
idea last year.
I was looking at kids coming to
school with a lot of junk food, and
being around people in the com-
munity and looking at how they
eat, she said.
They (the children) now intend
to be role models in their families
and some will be team leaders for
the next challenge.
Challengers did weigh-ins every
week, training and group ses-
sions, circuit training and zumba,
egged on by Facebook and texting.
One new dad -- a big fella --
joined the challenge at 196kg. He
shed 22kg (11.45 per cent ) and
now at 174kg is poised for the
next challenge while he continues
his fitness regimen.
Ms Muamua is also a volunteer
youth worker for Crossover Trust,
a Spreydon Baptist Church proj-
ect, the main supporter for the
community in this venture and
Rowley s right hand .
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