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Shona is spending her super to help kids, and here’s why 06 Aug

Shona is spending her super to help kids, and here’s why

Shona knows the collective power of Spend My Super can give the most precious thing – hope.

Shona would quite like a spa pool. And she also needs a new roof. But she asks, “How could I spend money on that when I know there are children without the basics; children who are just not getting the same opportunities my generation enjoyed.”

Like all New Zealanders over 65, Shona is eligible for her superannuation. Yet right now, she feels she doesn’t need it to live a good life – at least not as much as some of our worst-off children.

Life felt simple and safe

Shona speaks about her own childhood with affection and gratitude. She grew up in a small rural New Zealand town where life for most kids was simple and safe. “We played in the street and ‘down the paddock’. We went home to good food and warm beds. Every child deserves the safety and security that we felt”. Even though her upbringing was humble, she still had every opportunity to thrive.

Shona works for NZ Police. While she’s not a frontline worker, she’s very aware of the challenges that disadvantaged communities face – they’re complex and historical. Blaming parents is too simplistic. Shona has thought long and hard about how we might break the cycle of poverty. She concluded that an effective way is to give children the best chance to reach their full potential. “There are many ways to do this – for example, through government policies – I don’t write policies, but I can make a difference with Spend my Super.”

This is an opportunity for our generation

“I know that my generation is caring and generous, and Spend My Super gives us an amazing opportunity to demonstrate that. If we connect and act as a collective, we can make a big difference. Together, we can give families hope. Each of Spend My Super’s charities provides hope in a different way. It’s been set up so that all the money goes directly to the charities – every cent counts. I want to encourage and empower people to get behind this”.

To help inspire collective commitment, Shona has pledged not only to support Spend My Super but to match donations from other superannuants for one charity, Wellington City Mission.

Liz Greive, Founder of Spend My Super, is delighted with Shona’s generosity. “Shona is a wonderful example of how one person can join and bring great impetus to this movement to change the future.”

Shona says, “I want people to realise that donating to Spend My Super is an opportunity for any baby boomer who feels they want to contribute to the wellbeing of our community. It’s not for the super-rich. We can all play a part. As long I’m working, I’m going to support this. You see, even if I had a spa pool, I’d be able to find something else ‘important’ to spend my super on. But how can that ever be more important than health and home for a fellow Kiwi family?”

“I want New Zealand to be a place where people have a real chance to thrive, even if they don’t start with the advantage of being wealthy. It’s about preserving basic human rights, so every New Zealander can be proud of what we stand for individually and as a nation.”

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