Karapiro Domain was awash with super heroes on Friday 17 November 2017, as the annual Enrich+ client celebration got under way. The theme this year – yes – you guessed it, was ‘super heroes’. We were very fortunate to have spiderman and several of his similarly skilled brothers and sisters attend, along with superman and his family, the incredible hulk, Richie McCaw (in the All Blacks gear of course!), wonder woman, and many more. The celebration brings together people we support and their families and friends and staff, with heroes well represented across all who came.
Each year, people with disabilities work with the staff to plan the celebration, decide on the event location, food, and entertainment. This year, we were thrilled to receive sponsorship from Mike Goble at Pak n Save, The Warehouse in Te Awamutu, Contact Electrical, Waipa District Council and Greenlea Meats. Tony Egan, CEO of Greenlea Meats also brought the BBQ and he and his team cooked our lunch for the third year running. Brendon Perfect was thrilled to see Tony’s team at the celebration, as they had given Brendon a guided tour of the meat factory earlier in the year, and renewed their acquaintance.
With a fabulous hot day, people sang, shimmied and shook to the sounds of the Tim Armstrong band, as they belted out some well-known hits. The Dunk Tank was very popular, with many of our guests on the day excellent shots, much to the dismay of those who were brave enough to perch above a tank of very cold water, hoping that the thrower would miss the mark and they’d get out of the situation without getting wet. No chance of that!
For those interested in some high rise antics, Adventureworks provided people with the opportunity to get their feet off the ground, and ‘fly’ some 20 metres above the ground on the high ropes equipment. There were some very courageous individuals who all harnessed up, got a completely new view of the world from above. It was such a pleasure to see the delight on so many faces, as one after another, young and not so young, conquered their anxieties and did something completely out of their comfort zone.
Rough and tumble activities can be a challenge for some people with disabilities given limited mobility but the Zorb balls provided the ideal opportunity to have a smashing time with each other, and come out unscathed. The balls appealed particularly to the men, who once encased in a ball, would run into each other, bounce off, fall over (protected by the ball that surrounded them), get up and repeat it all over again. It was tremendous fun, but exhausting work!
Last year, staff considered whether having a celebration with 250 people all together was still the best way to celebrate the end of the year and up and coming festive season. With more emphasis on individualised support, choice and control, we wondered whether those we support may decide they’d prefer a range of different celebrations. When asked, the resounding response was they still wanted to share in the event together. Maybe it’s about friendships, and having the opportunity to try new experiences, which extend and challenge. Maybe it’s about the fabulous food. Whatever it is that keeps people coming, the Enrich+ team are always inspired by the gusto with which those we support take part, push themselves to try new things, and have a great day of fun.