Our iPad tells us that 688 days ago we wrote some notes summarizing what CanCERN could focus on going forward. 3 years ago, during a very shaky early morning awakening, my panicked mind told me that I needed to get my family together in a safe place to ride out the beginning of a what evolved into a very big disaster. 2 minutes ago we had to send an email to people in the Port Hills to let them know that CERA had released a media statement attempting to explain more delays to their Red Zone review announcement. Now we are writing this piece for the 99th CanCERN newsletter which will go out on the 3rd year anniversary of September 4th earthquake which occurred 1095 days ago.

All very interesting and possibly intriguing. Of course numbers don’t mean diddly in the middle of a disaster. In fact I doubt they mean a lot any time to ‘the people’ because no one wants to be seen or remembered as a number. I wish more of our leaders remembered this. You know, the effects their number talks have on the people…

He aha te mea nui? He tangata. He tangata. He tangata.
What is the most important thing? It is people, it is people, it is people

For many it is still very difficult for the third anniversary of the September quake to be a positive memory and for many ‘moving on’ or being in a better place is still difficult to see, let alone work on however there were certainly some amazing “events” to be remembered from that time.

We wish to once again acknowledge:

  • the people of the flat land red zones as the September quake was the defining moment for most of these communities. We wish you well wherever you have got to.
  • the people who live in places that were so broken in the September quake but who sat in isolation in their suburbs. Many of these people have been overlooked and are still waiting to be fixed.
  • the Port Hills people who are facing further delays with very little understanding of why they are waiting.
  • the roadies, plumbers, builders, painters, truck drivers and the like who have fixed our homes, roads, sewer pipes and bridges and have allowed so many people to get to where they need to go or help families start again.
  • the volunteers who have brightened our lives with smiles, chatter, pop up art works and spaces, help, guidance, gardens, events, food and friendship
  • You. For being here, believing in greater Christchurch and keeping a sense of humour. You are all incredibly AWESOME.

So what did we write 688 days ago?

“We need to bring the Councils, CERA and all the major agencies together. They need to agree to communicate, share, strengthen systems and get on with it”…

Kia Kaha Everyone.
The CanCERN Team