Hamilton Club gifts $48,000 to community groups

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The Hamilton Club is gifting $48,000 to 24 groups to acknowledge the work they do in the community.

Each group is to receive $2000 and is the final step in the process of closing down the historic club after 119 years.

Its latest distribution follows a decision earlier in the year to provide legacy gifts totaling $1.3million from the 2009 sale of the club’s heritage building in Grantham Street.

Gifts of $350,000 each were made to University of Waikato Foundation and the Wintec Foundation for tertiary scholarships in the club’s name funded from the interest.

The Waikato Medical Research Foundation received $150,000 with interest funding the Hamilton Club Emerging Researcher scholarship.

The Hamilton Gardens Development Trust received $350,000 towards a new garden attraction to be constructed within the next four years.

A further $100,000 was gifted through the Momentum Trust towards the city’s new performing arts facility to replace Founders Theatre.

In the final round of distributing the remaining assets, club president Gordon Chesterman said the following organisations will each receive $2000:

Parkinsons Waikato, SPCA Waikato, Kaivolution, Plunket St Andrews, Volunteering Waikato, Lifeline, ZEAL, Waikato Women’s Refuge, Society St Vincent De Paul, Riverlea Theatre Trust, Riding for the Disabled, Rhode Street School, One Victoria Trust, MS Waikato, McKenzie Centre Trust, Waikato Historical Society, Dress for Success, Friends of the Museum, Hamilton Christian Night Shelter, Diabetes NZ Waikato, Clarence Street Theatre, Autism NZ Waikato, Anglican Action and the Epilepsy Foundation Support Trust.

Mr Chesterman said the groups had been identified by the club’s remaining 54 members and approved at a recent special general meeting.

“The organisations will be surprised when their cheques arrive in the mail as there has been no prior contact with them nor any application process,” he said.

“We hope our surprise gift will make a small difference to the wonderful work they do in the community.

“For many groups we acknowledge their struggle to find the funds to undertake the work they do and congratulate the hundreds of volunteers who give so freely of their time to make it all possible.”

Meanwhile, 60 club members, guests and friends toasted 119 years of history with a final luncheon at the Waikato Stadium in October.

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