Shotover Primary School in the lakes district Otago, first opened its doors in 2015 to a role of only 88 students. While government funding has helped build the school, their grants fell short when it came to the construction of a playground. Every school and child that attends deserve to have a place to run around, climb and slide in their early years. G.J. Gardner Homes along with their partners Placemakers and Hoamz helped build a house for auction, with all the money going towards the construction of the new playground, which was estimated to cost between $350,000 and $450,000.
This major fundraising initiative was conceived in part to the current property market, with the low supply and high demand for housing in the area, with G.J. Gardner Homes Queenstown managing the project and fronting the initial costs of the house with all the labour and construction at no cost. Wanaka playground designer Trish Wrigley drew up a master plan for the grounds, based on feedback from parents, children and the board.
The slab for the home went down on the 22nd of June and was the first big landmark in the build process, and with the construction well underway afterwards the estimated time of competition was for early November. This amazing new home was a turnkey set-up, with everything taken care of for the lucky new owners – from the lawns and garden to the fencing.
“We’re delighted to support Shotover Primary and ultimately give a little back to the families who have supported our business over the last few years. It means a lot to our staff and everyone who works for G.J. Gardner, as many have children at the school. We hope the lucky buyers will get a great deal of satisfaction, knowing they have also contributed to the school.” – Nick Tapper, owner of G.J. Gardner Queenstown.
The auction was held late November, with the winning bid coming in at $810,000 from local accountant Peter Wilson, whose son actually already attends the school. Shotover Primary was able to net $275,000, with that all going towards the playground, Ben Witheford the schools principal commented “That [$275,000] is really because of the local companies giving us substantial discounts or in some cases actually donating their services and materials”.
Thanks to not only G.J. Gardner Homes Queenstown, but many other local businesses who helped along the way, now the children of Shotover Primary will have an extra reason to attend school!