Posted by Liz Courtney

Papanui Rotary Art and Craft Bazaar an outstanding success

The trailers, volunteers, trestle tables and box after box of goods arrived at Papanui High School Hall on Friday afternoon to set up for the Craft Bazaar. Amongst the noise and organized chaos rows grew like mushrooms magically appearing from nowhere and soon colourful packs of fabrics, beads, lace and wool along with an array of crafting items packed the tables.
We felt justifiably proud of all the hard work over several months of collecting, measuring and bagging to see that we had a professional looking Craft Bazaar emerge with clear signage and a wonderful array of products on display. The once stark hall was now a colourful and interesting place ready to entice people to fossick and “bag a bargain”.
We were duly rewarded when we had people ready and waiting for the doors to open on a bright and sunny Saturday all eager to see and buy. It was a busy day brightened by the arrival of a group of Steampunk characters ready to add to the fun in their original and beautiful clothing adorned with lace, feathers, costume jewelry and looking to add more !
However, the most valuable part of the day was being able to help people find something special to add to a homemade gift, finding material for the Days for Girls kits something many Rotarians are involved in making, looking for material for a lady who makes surgical caps for the medical teams at Christchurch hospital, locating colourful material for a woman who makes dresses and shorts for children in the Pacific Islands and Africa – the stories just kept coming and our tables started to empty out.
“Many hands make light work” and this proved to be true when it came to pack up time as volunteers appeared and within an hour the hall was returned to its original state, floors swept, chairs stacked, with trestle tables and boxes loaded onto trailers. All ready for next year ?
Connecting with the community is the reward for those of us who stood behind the tables over the weekend and we raised the awareness of Rotary in Papanui. Maternal and Child Health is one of our 7 Areas of Focus and our goal was to support women and children in Christchurch by raising funds for the Rotary Community Breast Milk Bank, The Aunties and Good Night Sleep Tight – all charities deserving of our help.
Our thanks to Papanui High School who gave us free use of their hall and to our members, families and friends who so generously gave us their time to help, not just on the day, but over several months of hard work. You are a great team and we appreciate our volunteers.