Methven Care Trust - News


Trust benefits from Mud Plug

Sue van den Heuvel - Monday, July 03, 2017

Methven Care Trust was thrilled to accept a donation of $5,000.00 from the Mid Canterbury Four Wheel Drive Club Inc following the huge success of their Mud Plug event held on Sunday 7th May at Alford Forest.

Sunny skies on the day of event following a few wet day's prior provided the perfect mix for enthusiastic mud pluggers who challenged themselves and their vehicles around the slippery track.  Spectators were entertained with plenty of engine revving and mud roosting!

We were asked to support the event by means of providing volunteers to assist with car parking and crowd control on the day, in return for a donation, we were obviously very grateful to be considered by the club and extremely pleased with the value of the donation received.

The event also benefitted the Alford Forest Rural Fire Unit and the Westpac Rescue Helicopter Trust.

Pictured below is Jo Suyker (MCT Chairperson) receiving donation from Marcus Ewart on behalf of the Mid Canterbury Four Wheel Drive Club Inc

Rare opportunity to see salmon release up-close

Sue van den Heuvel - Monday, June 19, 2017


The opportunity to get up close to watch the release of young salmon is the latest fundraising event for Methven Care Trust.

The Annual Salmon Smolt Release in conjunction with Montrose Estate and Fish&Game has been organised by neighbouring Rakaia Gorge farmer Donna Field.

On Sunday 23rd July (the last day of the school holidays), thousands of salmon smolt will be released by Fish&Game to boost the salmon population in the Rakaia River.  This only happens once a year providing a unique opportunity to learn about the life cycle of one of New Zealand's most popular fish.  The 5km drive to exit Montrose Estate via adjacent Cleardale Station allows locals to get a taste of high country life and the grandeur of the gorge.

With a sausage sizzle and coffee providing refreshments, the 9am to 1pm event is definitely worth getting up early for.  The actual salmon smolt release will happen between 10am and 10.30am.  However the salmon hatchery will be open for people to look around and lots of young salmon will still be in the creek.  When the salmon are released, children and other volunteers will be given the chance to carry buckets of smolt to the creek to tip them in.

As the location requires travel over farm tracks, the experience is not suitable for low clearance cars.  Interested parties are advised to wear warm clothes and wear gumboots or boots.

Donna says the Annual Salmon Smolt Release is a follow up to her previous fundraising venture in the form of the "Rakaia Gorgeous Ball" held for six years with half the money going to Methven House.

"I've always been keen on looking after the older people in our communities and the release of the salmon smolt will be a celebratory occasion in a beautiful spot and interesting to watch."

"My favourite part of the release is watching the eels come out to eat the smolt and getting so full they can barely move.  The eels are huge and impressive fish and it is wonderful to see them."

"It is impressive that the people of our town can find the energy and enthusiasm to fund housing for the elderly.  So many older people want to stay in Methven close to family and friends rather than go to Ashburton and we are creating that opportunity.  I would like everyone to get behind the project and contribute in any way they can."

The salmon smolt release - on the last Sunday of the school holidays - will provide an unforgettable experience before school routine kicks back in.  Mark Sunday 23 July in your diary now as we'd love your support at this inaugural event.



Mini Olympics come to Methven

Sue van den Heuvel - Monday, June 12, 2017

Medal fever will hit Methven in October with the announcement of the inaugural Team Challenge Mini Olympics - a new fundraising event for Methven Care Trust.

Sponsored by Mt Hutt Helicopters 2013 Ltd and organised by Newzengland Clay Shooting and Archery Services Ltd, the event will see teams of four compete in archery, golf, clay bird shooting and gumboot throwing.

There will be prizes for the top male and female competitors, the top team, best 'themed' team and a presentation of a trophy for overall winning team.  The Mini Olympics is open to those aged 18 years and over.

Methven Care Trust fundraising co-ordinator Sue van den Heuvel says the trust was very excited when Newzengland Ltd, a local tourism company, brought the idea to them.

"Newzengland Ltd saw it as a good way to give back to the community as they run tourism activities from Terrace Downs and is keen to expose locals to their services.  And Mt Hutt Helicopters 2013 Ltd has come onboard as a sponsor to help lift the profile of this inaugural event.  The trust is very grateful to both businesses for their support.  We're now hoping locals will support it as a work outing, team building exercise or early Christmas function."

The Mini Olympics takes place Friday 13th October at the site of the proposed new resthome for Methven within Camrose Estate.

It will be an afternoon of fun competition with all profits going to Methven Care Trust, which has a goal of raising $5.5million to rebuild the resthome.  All equipment and coaching will be supplied and experience isn't necessary.

Local businesses, sports clubs and community groups are invited to register teams with intense rivalry expected.  Out of town teams will also be sought to up the stakes.

Entry into the competition includes a complimentary beer or wine and a spit roast dinner at the Blue Pub at the end of the day.  The prizegiving will also feature an auction and raffles.

Please click here for registration form and further details.

Pictured on-site at Camrose Estate Jo Suyker (MCT Chairperson), Adam Kershaw (Mt Hutt Helicopters), Neil Gubby (Newzengland Ltd)

Singing talent on show

Sue van den Heuvel - Wednesday, June 07, 2017

A suggestion from the late Ian Totty will bring a range of talented singers together in August.

A Variety Concert has been organised for Friday 11th August (new date confirmed following post phonement of original event date, 21st July) at the Mt Hutt Memorial Hall with all proceeds going to Methven Care Trust.

A talented group of ladies from Methven known as 'The Fascinating Ladies' are one of the star attractions.  Led by Methven music teacher Kate Lambarth, the ladies choir will perform classics such as 'What a wonderful world' and 'Operator' followed by some more classical pieces.

The Fascinating Ladies will join together with the Men's MSA choir on the night, which Ian Totty was a member of, to sing three songs sure to please local music buffs.  Further musical guests from the Methven area will also perform bringing locals a great night of music and talent from our wonderful town.

Tickets (which include supper) are now available at the Methven and Ashburton I-Sites and from choir members, $20 adult, $5 child.

Methven Care Trust benefits from farmers' efforts

Sue van den Heuvel - Monday, May 08, 2017

There are many unseen faces supporting the Methven Care Trust project and one of these couples is Keith and Shari Early.

The Earlys are among farmers raising weaned calves for the trust.  The take in steer or heifer calves suitable for grazing and take them through to finishing.  The process can add another $1000 in value to the animal with all proceeds going directly to the trust.  Methven Care Trust is aiming to raise $5.5million to rebuild Methven House so aged care can continue to be offered in Methven.

The Earlys currently have two steers and were involved last season in raising animals.

"We just run them with our own cattle the same age.  They get treated the same, drenched, vaccinations and so on.  For me it's a painless way to fundraise.  They're just in with the mob and with two extras you don't even notice the extra outlay," says Keith.

The Earlys have reared calves for many community organisations - St John's Presbyterian Church, Lauriston School, the local cricket and rugby clubs and Lyndhurst Reserve.  Helping out Methven Care Trust is just another good cause to support.

"It's painless as far as we're concerned because there's no cash outlay or juggling around.  The first two went to the works last spring and the funds go direct to Methven Care Trust.  So it's simple in that respect," he says.

While Keith's involvement with Methven Care Trust has been limited to this project, he understands what the trust is trying to achieve.

"I hope it's a long way off for us (needing aged care) but we can understand the concept of the whole thing and this is one way we can support it.  Rather than having to fork out $500."

Jo Suyker, Chairperson of Methven Care Trust and a member of the Dairy fundraising subcommittee, says dairy farmers kick-start the process by providing weaned calves.

"They rear them and give us anything suitable that we can place on farms to be taken through to finishing."

Six finishing farms are involved at the moment with calves on average generating around $1500 when they go to the works.

"Farmers just see this as part of their business.  And we're just really grateful to take the animals that they can provide.  We're also grateful to the finishing farms that graze them."

This is the third season Methven Care Trust has run a calf rearing programme which to date has contributed approximately $20,000 towards the fundraising target.

Pictured:  Keith Early

Time to get serious about rebuilding Methven House

Sue van den Heuvel - Thursday, April 20, 2017

Two years after the fundraising campaign for a new Methven House commenced, organisers say it’s time to get serious about putting money into the project – before the building becomes too expensive to maintain or earthquake concerns deem it unusable. 

“I took my first breath in this current building. I will not take my last in it. The building will beat me to it,” said Methven Care Trust chairperson Jo Suyker at the home’s recent 40th birthday celebrations.

In a speech to 50 invited guests, Mrs Suyker said it was a tribute to the Methven community that the town had cared for its elderly for four decades in the former maternity hospital building on Morgan Street.

“Forty years of care, 40 years of commitment, 40 years of empathy and 40 years of devotion that has been given to the people that have walked through the doors and made Methven House their home. That, quite frankly, is a mighty effort for a community of this size.”

However, another four decades won’t be possible if Methven people don’t realise what they have to lose if sufficient funds can’t be raised.

 “Methven Care Trust, along with support from the community has set a target of five years to raise $5million for the building. To put it quite bluntly, Methven Care Trust, in these initial stages has been a glorified fundraising mechanism. We are nearly two and a half years in on this project and to date have $503,000 in the bank. A little frightening you may say with half our target years gone and only 10% raised. But I am quietly confident this community will rise to the challenge, and for the sake of taking the responsibility of caring for our elderly seriously, see us over the line.”

With more than 200 people – including preschoolers and school children visiting Methven House on its 40th birthday – Mrs Suyker said it was hoped greater exposure to the home would open people’s eyes to the asset on their doorstep.

“Whilst we enjoy this day of fond memories, celebration and gratitude to those that fought and rallied against the odds to establish Methven House, we must now look forward and into the future as to how we want the next 40 plus years to evolve. Like many here today and those that have gone before us, we must now too fight and rally to create a new space to ensure the continuation of Methven House’s great legacy.”

Methven Care Trust was established in October 2014 to raise funds for and oversee the building of a new aged care facility for Methven on gifted land in Camrose Estate. The trust recently developed a pledge form that allows residents to commit to supporting the project over an agreed period of time or via a one-off donation. More details are available via the fundraising co-ordinator Sue Van den Heuvel on



Fundraising Committee Meeting

Sue van den Heuvel - Friday, April 07, 2017

Our next fundraising committee meeting will be held on Tuesday 20TH JUNE, 7.00PM at The Lodge Bar & Restaurant, Methven Chertsey Road.

All welcome, come along and here what is going on, new faces very welcome, don't be shy, we are a friendly bunch!

Enquiries via email to or phone our Fundraising Co-ordinator on 021 274 6657.


Methven House 40th Anniversary Garden Party

Sue van den Heuvel - Friday, April 07, 2017

Methven House is turning 40 this month!

Drop in to meet staff and residents and learn more about Methven's community-run rest home.

TUESDAY 11TH APRIL 10am to 12pm and 1.00pm to 3.00pm.

Musical interludes provided by local schools and pre-schools, all welcome!

Flying the flag

Sue van den Heuvel - Thursday, March 23, 2017

Check out our new flag, we think it looks great!

This has been a true team effort with the costs relating to having the flag designed and made, being kindly donated by a family in our community, and the base being made by the team at Richards Custom Machinery here in Methven.

This now allows us to have a higher profile when attending events and 'flying the flag' to raise public awareness.

Thank you to all involved.

Methven Care Trust unveils signs

Sue van den Heuvel - Friday, February 03, 2017

Release date: 8 November 2016

Methven Care Trust has unveiled two fundraising signs in the centre of Methven to update the community on progress towards meeting the $5million target to rebuild Methven House.

Thanks to Supervalue owners Kelly and Don McDonald and Four Square owners Garry and Lynn Eddington, signs have been erected on the side of Methven's two supermarkets.  A graphic of the proposed new rest home - made up of $10K bricks - shows the total amount needed.  So far nearly $420,000 has been raised so those bricks are coloured orange.  As funds increase, the bricks will change colour providing transparent reporting on fundraising progress.  The sign was created by Janine Peters from Designamite and the framing and casing work contributed by Harvey Grieve as a Methven Lions project.  Further donors provided materials and additional labour and Methven Care Trust thanks all parties involved in helping us build and install the signs.

Don't forget the trust's Methven and Foothills House & Garden tour is on next weekend, Saturday 19th November.  Tickets can be purchased from the Methven and Ashburton Isites right up to the day.  Nine properties in and around Methven will be open for viewing - all new properties compared to last year's tour.  The event provided a wonderful excuse to enjoy gorgeous local gardens and properties, with all funds raised going to the trust.  Devonshire teas and a fantastic raffle will be on sale at one property so be sure to bring cash.

In tandem with the house and garden tour, the trust is repeating last year's successful rock fundraiser.  Alpine sourced greywacke rocks and limestone versions are on sale now at KT's Contracting on Line Road (ranging in cost from $50 to $400).  Example rocks will be showcased at one property on the house and garden tour.  These make perfect Christmas or special occasion gifts and free delivery is offered to addresses within 7km of Methven.

Four Square's Lynn Eddington with Jo Suyker and Ron Smith from Methven Care Trust.     



SuperValue owners Kelly and Don McDonald with Methven Care Trustees (from left) Roger Henderson, Colin Lill, Jo Suyker and Rone Smith and Lions member Harvey Grieve.

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