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Father & Child Magazine Issue #39

Importance of Touch; Childcare Revisited: criticism on government policy; Second Family: A single dad of four starts over again; Legal ages.



  • The Importance of Touch NZ seems to be a country of under-touchers. Brendon Smith finds himself sold on the idea of massage and touch for children.
  • A Day in the Life of a Dad No-one knows how many ‘role-reversed’ families there are exactly, but more and more men report having spent at least some period of their children’s early years at home with them. Dave Crampton talks about his experiences.
  • Doing it…again A Christchurch dad starts a new family – after four children from a previous relationship. [Not online]
  • Revisiting Childcare The government’s drive to get more children into ‘Early Childhood Education’ is not without critics, as Mark Stephenson reports.
  • How Old Do You Have to Be? Jonathan Young sorts through the legal mess.
  • Parenting: Achievement


Hooray For The Community Trusts

The Community Trusts (with the exception of the NZ Community Trust and the ASB Trust) were formed to distribute the business surplus from the old Trust Bank to community purposes. When the bank was sold to Westpac , the Community Trusts invested the capital from that sale and started distributing the investment income. The ASB Community Trust in Auckland is funded by ASB Bank proceeds on the same principle.

Most community funders in New Zealand fund community groups according to the Watering Can Principle: everyone gets a little, because there’s never enough to give everyone what they ask for and no-one should miss out.

Government funding is even more volatile, as governments have their own agendas and see themselves as ‘purchasing’ a service they wanted all along. The last government saw children simply as a commodity, no different to buying a car: it’s your own choice to have one, so don’t come to the government asking for support. The present one believes only women have anything to do with children and hasn’t realised that the 1970s ended about 30 years ago.

Neither one fancied putting money into father’s projects.

Community Trusts, on the other hand, are not only free from the political tug-o-wars, they also have the means to make a real difference. Both, the ASB and the Canterbury Community Trusts are the biggest community funders in their respective locations. If someone comes with a good idea and meets certain standards, they’ll put the money up for it.

Father & Child Trust would not be here without this support. Not only has the Canterbury Community Trust backed us throughout the 10 years we’ve been around, they also fully funded the development costs of the New Babies Edition of this magazine, our biggest project yet (see ‘news’ page). We approached the ASB Community Trust in Auckland for the first time last year and asked them to fund the cost of printing and distribution to cover Auckland hospitals—which they did – as well as some money for the local branch (which they also supported).

For us and probably countless others the Community Trusts make the difference between subsistence and existence. They allow wages to be paid for work that, with a clear conscience, should not be done by volunteers. They take the risk of sometimes putting substantial funds in things that never go anywhere in order to support truly innovative ideas that at times end up causing much more positive change than anything a government can come up with.

On behalf of Father & Child:
Thanks Guys!

Harald Breiding-Buss

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