'Decorate our Christmas tree and make a donation to Far North Hospice' - that's the invitation Te Ahu Trust and the Far North District Council are extending to people in the Far North this Christmas.
The trustees and council staff have put up a remembrance Christmas tree in the Te Ahu atrium to raise money for the hospice in Kaitaia, which provides palliative and cancer care for the community from Cape Reinga to the Mangamukas and from the North Hokianga to Taupo Bay.
Visitors to Te Ahu are invited to buy a Christmas bauble with a gold coin donation, sign a remembrance book and place the bauble on the tree.
Council customer services manager Nina Gobie said the trustees and staff wanted to support a worthy cause, and provide an opportunity for people to remember absent family and friends.
"We want people to visit Te Ahu, get a sense of what Christmas is really about and add to the festive spirit," she said.
Tourists who were visiting the Far North and would not be with friends and family over Christmas were also welcome to sign the book and help decorate the tree, and everyone was welcome to view, and contribute to, a display of photos showing scenes from Christmases past in Kaitaia.
"The response so far has been fantastic, with donations totalling more than $110," Ms Gobie added.
The trust and council were grateful to Juken New Zealand, Te Hiku Community Board and the hospice for donating the tree, festive lights and baubles.