Home' Motueka Golden Bay News : May 16th 2013 Contents Front Cover THURSDAY, MAY 16, 2013
Presents Motueka's Big
"SHOP & WIN"
Spend a day in Motueka! From March 25th 2013 -
May 25th 2013 make a purchase at a participating
Motueka business and you're in to win over $5000 in
prizes. Ask for your entry form instore. Full details at
www.ourtownmotueka.co.nz See you soon!
Waste not, want not
Happy Mother's Day: Ni-Van women selling baskets woven from plastic pallet strapping at the Motueka Sunday market. From left: Annette Ken, Netty Charlie,
Anna Kila, Merribel Tor, Linda Tara, pastoral worker Trevor A'Court and Netty Simotea.
Photo: ALASTAIR PAULIN
By ALASTAIR PAULIN
These people all live in different
areas and they only have Sunday
off so this is a focal point for
everyone to meet. Otherwise they
might never get to see some of
their family and friends.
When Netty Charlie saw
discarded plastic pallet
strapping heading for
the rubbish, she knew she could
transform waste into craft.
At home I usually weave mats
and I know how to make baskets
and when I made one, all the
other ladies were impressed,
So Netty, an orchard packhouse
worker from Vanuatu who is in
Motueka on the Recognised Seaso-
nal Employer scheme, showed
other women how to make the
baskets and now about eight Ni-
Van women are weaving and sell-
ing them at the Motueka Sunday
They normally throw it away
and burn it, said Netty of the
blue and white plastic strapping.
She made her first basket to
keep her pegs in but has branched
out into big shopping baskets,
drink-bottle holders and even
The bags range in price from
$10 to $25 and Netty estimated
they could take anywhere from 20
minutes to six hours to weave,
depending on size and complexity.
Netty is enjoying Motueka on
her second five-month RSE stint
but said she misses her husband
and children, a 13-year-old boy
and 8-year-old girl.
She also misses food from home,
such as manioc and taro.
Her favourite food is lap-lap,
which is manioc, banana and coco-
nut wrapped in banana leaf and
cooked on hot stones.
On the other hand, she likes
having work and having money
every week. We buy something
different to bring home, like solar
Last Sunday, half a dozen Ni-
Van women gathered at the mar-
ket, where their singing and
weaving attracted lots of custom-
The market stall was the idea of
pastoral support volunteers Val
and Trevor A Court, more for the
sociability of it than the com-
We asked the ladies if they
would like to make the baskets
and come down to the market as a
meeting place for all the Ni-Van
workers in town, Val said.
These people all live in differ-
ent areas and they only have
Sunday off so this is a focal point
for everyone to meet. Otherwise
they might never get to see some
of their family and friends, said
The ladies can t keep up with
demand so in one sense it is good
but I also feel a bit guilty because
this is their only day off, he said.
It has resonated with people
here, to come and sit and be with
the people as they make the bas-
Along with the baskets, the
women display some of their beau-
tiful woven pandanus fibre mats
from home and help locals get a
sense of who the seasonal workers
in their midst are.
There are about 180 RSE wor-
kers from Vanuatu on local
orchards and 950 RSE workers
from Pacific islands in the region
There are plenty of new things
here. We like it here. We make
friends here -- people meet us in
town and ask where we come from
and talk and laugh with us, said
Happy customer Frances Harris
had just bought four baskets.
She had been in Vanuatu,
known as the New Hebrides
before independence, 44 years ago
and loved the reminders of her
time sailing in the Pacific.
It s Mother s Day and I m
celebrating my mother and the
fact that I m a happy mother.
I heard the singing earlier and
that is just the islands -- I just love
it. Trevor said it was appropriate
to be at the market on Mother s
Day because it usually a big deal
for Ni-Van women, often cel-
ebrated with a special service.
He said they would continue to
come to the market sporadically,
based on the weather and the
supply of baskets.
Try time, page 20
Where has the art gone? page 8
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