News Archive : September 2014

Fulfilling broadcast dreams at St Thomas’s School
September 26, 2014

DSC_0007St Thomas’s School students are soon set to be TV stars.

The Kohimarama school aims to establish its own TV studio, allowing the smiley faces of its students to be broadcast into classrooms.

The children will upskill and hone their presenting and technology skills, while delivering news and special reports produced in the TV studio.

A $4000 grant from the Harcourts Foundation has helped to get the project underway.

St Thomas’s School principal Michael Maher says the TV studio is part of their overall technology suite, which includes interactive whiteboards in each classroom, wireless internet throughout the school and, in the near future, BYOD (bring your own device) for students.

Mr Maher says given the rate of technological advances, it’s important for schools to keep up – and this often means a lot of fundraising.

“We’ve got 800 wonderful students and this grant from the Harcourts Foundation will benefit every …

Supporting sport for the vision impaired
September 21, 2014

As a partially sighted or blind young person, it’s an incredible feeling to be able to take on a sighted opponent in sport and win.

That’s the feeling Cassie, 21, had after well and truly defeating both Harcourts CEO Hayden Duncan and Harcourts Manurewa business owner Graham Viall in a game of swish ball.

Swish ball is similar to table tennis, but with modifications to make it suitable for people with impaired vision. The ball moves so fast that sound becomes more important than sight in the game.

Cassie took on Mr Duncan and Mr Viall at the Blind and Low Vision Education Network New Zealand (Blennz) in Manurewa, where she lives as part of the Kickstart programme. Cassie and up to nine other young people live in the Kickstart unit for a maximum of two years before they move on to independent living.

Mr Duncan and Mr Viall visited …

A helping hand for the CAB Hibiscus Coast
September 16, 2014

CABIt’s the first place some turn when they are faced with a question they just can’t answer or a problem they can’t solve.

The Citizens Advice Bureau Hibiscus Coast receives upwards of 660 enquiries each month from local people needing some kind of help in their lives.

And thanks to generous support from the Harcourts Foundation and Harcourts Orewa, the CAB team of 36 volunteers now have new computers to work with.

Volunteer Joan Roberts says the old computers had gotten so temperamental it was touch and go whether they would start sometimes.

“The council funds our premises, electricity and our two part-time paid staff, but anything extra needs to be fundraised for – so this grant is a godsend for us.”

The Citizens Advice Bureau Hibiscus Coast offers free legal advice, accountancy and tax help, and JP services. However, the advice they offer goes much wider, with each day …

Helping to keep the Hibiscus Coast safe
September 16, 2014


They are the eyes and ears of the police, patrolling the streets of the Hibiscus Coast to report trouble before it escalates.

The Hibiscus Coast Community Patrol have been in existence since 2006, with regular patrols on Fridays and Saturdays carried out by a team of 21 volunteers.

Volunteer Frank Rands says every patrol, without fail, they spot an incident which needs to be reported to and followed up by the police.

They are funded entirely through donations and sponsors, and Harcourts Orewa has made a generous grant of $1970 to help with the group’s running costs.

Although they never intervene directly, the volunteers are in regular contact with the police, who follow up on their observations of, among other things, boy racers, heavily intoxicated people, and suspicious cars.

“There is so much activity we are looking to extend our hours. There is certainly a need for it,” Frank says.…

Harcourts Foundation Butterfly Ball Raises Funds for Perinatal Research
September 15, 2014

Harcourts_Foundation_LogoThe Harcourts Foundation has once again joined forces with fundraising group, Butterfly Babies to support the 2014 Harcourts Butterfly Ball, which will be held at the Sofitel Brisbane on Saturday the 20th of September.

Butterfly Babies is a fundraising arm of the Royal Brisbane and Women’s Hospital Foundation, focused on raising money and awareness for the internationally recognised Perinatal Research Centre (PRC). The dedicated team of researchers at the centre is focused on understanding and ultimately preventing pregnancy and birth complications for mothers and babies. Their current research is focused on exploring ways to reduce brain injury following premature birth, developing methods to detect seizures in babies and understanding how body systems can effect brain development.

Naming rights sponsor for the event, The Harcourts Foundation, is the charitable arm of Harcourts International Real Estate Group and has raised close to $3,000,000 since its establishment in August 2008. The Harcourts Foundation …

Show Jumping Aids SPCA With Donation From Harcourts Foundation
September 15, 2014

National show jumping champion Shaun Neill demonstrated his love of animals recently when he nominated the Vereeniging SPCA as the beneficiary of a cash donation made in his name by Harcourts Real Estate as part of his winnings at the 2014 SA Championships held in Durban recently.

Neill, who took the honours on Clyde Z, received a cheque of R20 000 as a donation to his favourite charity from Harcourts CEO Richard Gray. The property group not only sponsored the five-day event, which is a highlight of the local equestrian calendar, but this year also decided to introduce the “Riding for a Cause” initiative in which the top riders were all asked to nominate a charity that would benefit if they won..

Those who missed the live action will be able to see all the highlights of the SA Championships on the SuperSport 8 channel from 18:00 on September 9.…