Cantab help still in retreat

The funding shortfall that threatens to stop the Tamahere wellness retreat, The Monastery, from continuing to help earthquake-frazzled Christchurch residents back to health is again in the news.

The Monastery, on Newell Rd, has been a sanctuary for more than two years, giving free help to Christchurch people whose lives were turned upside down by the February 2011 earthquake.

The 107-year-old villa with extensive gardens and sweeping views over the Waikato River promotes itself as a place where people can get away from their ravaged city.

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Tamahere nurtures earthquake weary

For the last two years, The Monastery, the therapeutic retreat at Tamahere, has offered a free, five-day retreat to Cantabrians directly affected by the earthquakes.

More than 350 Cantabrians, usually five at a time, have passed through the Newell Rd retreat since its Christchurch Project began in May 2011. The costs, at $1800 per retreat, have been fully met by The Monastery’s founder, the Hamilton-based Wise Group.

Wise joint chief executive Julie Nelson says she and her staff have been overwhelmed by the response to the retreats and would love to provide opportunities to more Cantabrians, but need support to continue beyond December.

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