BY JULIA WADE
Inspired by a Facebook post from local Maryann Lishman, community-minded couple Mike and Libby Clews established the Seabreeze Drive food donation stall, making Mangawhai the newest member to be listed officially online with Community Fruit & Veg Stands (CFVS).
“Maryann shared a group on the local’s page around four weeks ago, suggesting it would be great in our community… being a holiday town a lot of wasted food is created from fruit trees to food left at rented bachs,” Mike says. “I thought it was an awesome idea!”
Based on sharing excess produce from private gardens, CFVS is already popular in townships throughout Rodney district, from Coatsville to Orewa and far west as South Head with Mangawhai being the third in Kaipara, joining stalls already set up in Bayleys Beach and Ruawai.
The guiding rules are simple – anything spare from home is welcome and anyone can help themselves to anything without needing to trade if unable to do so.
After talking to CFVS administrator Mark Dennis regarding setup of the stand (and also offered free signage) Mike, a qualified carpenter and owner of local firm Clews Construction, got to work designing and building the required stall.
“My inspiration came from a photo Libby had shown me, I took the idea and came up with something I thought fitted in. I love rustic houses so this was easy for me to envisage and build.”
Assembled mainly from left-over materials from Mike’s recent work sites, the stall has already seen plenty of activity and enthusiasm from the Mangawhai community, keen to give away surplus home-grown fruit and vegetables including feijoas, limes, lemons, herbs, nuts, olives and seeds as well as eggs, canned goods and even magazines.
“It’s awesome to see sharing of produce that would otherwise go to waste. The community has taken to it well and I love seeing all the buzz about it,” Mike says. “We love giving back to the community and thought this would be another small token we could do to give back to this great little town.”
Open for business; Mike Clews with his specially designed community stall on Seabreeze Drive. (PHOTO/Supplied)
“It’s awesome to see sharing of produce that would otherwise go to waste. The community has taken to it well…”