Mowhanau has scored a valuable piece of equipment which will, no doubt, save lives.
The Henare family, residents of the Kai Iwi Beach community, has donated a defibrillator and tamper-proof cabinet to be housed at the Community Hall, also the local Civil Defence Centre.
Sandy Henare died during a cardiac arrest at his Mowhanau home in October. He was 54.
His widow, Diane, daughter Casey Graham, Diane's parents, Ken and Jenny Forster and grandchildren Eva and Mikaere made the presentation at a community gathering last Friday morning. Unable to make the ceremony were daughter Kylie Henare and her children Hazel, 2 and Violet, 15 months.
"We're so pleased to be able to present this to the community. I guess for us it's come a bit late, but better late than never. Sandy died of a cardiac arrest and if we had this in our community it might have made a difference," says Diane. "About a week later there was a Seven Sharp programme on heart health, and at the end of it they were offering two free AEDs [defibrillators] for communities. We thought ours is a special community."
Diane's daughter Kylie applied for one of the life-saving tools.
"Within a fortnight they'd come back, saying they were overwhelmed with our story and that they were more than happy for this to be presented. So here it is. The girls, their husbands and I have contributed to the cabinet so it comes as a package.
"Here's hoping we never have to use it."
The item on Seven Sharp was the Heart Saver Campaign and the AED's on offer were donated by Heart Saver in Partnership with Cigna and GrownUps.
"Grownups New Zealand is working with Heart Saver as part of the Become a Heart Saver Campaign to help give away two AED's every month to community groups, sports teams and not for profits with the intention of getting more AEDs around the country, making them more available to everyday Kiwis," says Fleur Jenneson of Grownups NZ. "We want as many people as possible to know where they are in their communities and how important they are as sudden cardiac arrest is the leading cause of death in NZ adults."
The location of the AED will be lodged with the administrators of the AED app which is available for all smart phones and gives the location of every defibrillator in New Zealand.
Rapanui Mowhanau Community Centre chairman George Handley is arranging a meeting at which residents will learn how to use the equipment.