17 May 2019
The New Zealand Defence Force (NZDF) has transported 1.5 tonnes of donated clothes, toys, books and other goods destined for remote communities in Fiji.
Air Commodore Tim Walshe, the Air Component Commander, said a Royal New Zealand Air Force Boeing 757 aircraft on a scheduled flight to the Fijian capital of Suva this week transported the goods collected by Wellington-based non-profit organisation EMPOWER NZ.
“Our Defence Force is pleased to be able to support such a worthy cause,” Air Commodore Walshe said.
Fiona Tora from EMPOWER NZ said most of the shipment comprised new goods, including clothing for women, children and men, and educational resources such as books and stationery.
“We’ve also included donated toys, linen and clothes for infants and toddlers.”
EMPOWER NZ volunteers had been working for almost two years to collect the goods and the NZDF’s assistance in transporting them to Fiji was invaluable, Ms Tora said.
“These goods will make a difference to the lives of people in rural areas of Fiji and I know they’re looking forward to receiving them. Some of the goods will be used to support grassroots community initiatives.”
EMPOWER NZ is collaborating with its sister organisation EMPOWER Development Fiji to distribute the goods.