Civic events  |  14 Dec 2021

Nineteen individuals and groups who have given outstanding service to the community were honoured with Civic Awards today.

These awards are presented annually by Christchurch City Council, in recognition of those who give their time and energy for the benefit of others.

Recipients are nominated by city residents for service across a wide range of areas including recreation, social welfare, youth activities, education, cultural, or community affairs.

Civic Awards Committee Chair Councillor Yani Johanson says recipients from a wide cross section of society are represented.  

What they all have in common is that they have demonstrated dedication and commitment to making Christchurch a wonderful place. The Civic Awards are a small way for Council to acknowledge and say thank you for the amazing efforts individuals and groups go to for the good of our communities."

This year’s Civic Award recipients are:

Erica Austin. Since 2012 Erica Austin has become a serial volunteer, working for such groups as GapFiller, Pechakucha, TEDx Christchurch and Te Pūtahi.

Margaret Austin CNZM.  Public service has been at the heart of Margaret Austin’s life. She has displayed outstanding leadership as an educator, administrator, academic, politician and benefactor.

Usma Azhar. A determined young Pakistani woman and an advocate for the ethnic and wider pan-ethnic communities, she has collaborated with multiple organisations to provide smoother pathways to employment, improve wellness and preserve language and cultural traditions.

Don Babe. A longtime advocate for the cycling community, Don Babe is the Chair of Spokes Canterbury and the Christchurch – Little River Rail Trail Trust.

Michael Bell. Through the Little Andromeda Theatre, Michael Bell has provided a unique space for professional performing artists and has greatly supported Canterbury’s creative culture.

The Christchurch Guangdong Association. Established in 2007, this organisation has worked hard to strengthen the ties between New Zealand and China and promote a multicultural Christchurch. 

Ross Gray. Currently Chair of the Christchurch Civic Trust, Ross Gray has been a fierce defender of heritage values in the city, where he has championed its cultural and aesthetic heritage for 30 years. 

Yanan Huang. Working closely with many organisations, Yanan Huang has supported the city’s Chinese community for several decades through her practical help, advice and encouragement.

Emmie King. Canterbury branch president of the New Zealand Chinese Association for eight years, Emmie King works to promote and preserve knowledge of Chinese culture within the wider community. She is also an active member of the Christchurch Multicultural Council.

Anton Matthews. Through his organisation Hustle group, Anton Matthews provides instruction in tikanga Māori, particularly te reo Māori. He is helping shape an environment where te reo is an everyday part of life in Aotearoa.

Diane McMenamin. Assisting vulnerable elderly through legal support, advocacy and property management, Diane McMenamin supports people in need through her time and expertise.

Don Mortensen. The founder of sexual abuse prevention organisation STOP, Don Mortensen has striven to make the community safe from harmful behaviour.

The Natural Magic Pirates. Forty years since they first hoisted the Jolly Roger, this merry band of entertainers are still bringing fun, music and laughter to the people of New Brighton and wider Christchurch.

Colleen Philip. As Chair of Sustainable Ōtautahi, Christchurch Colleen Phillip excels at connecting people and organisations with each other to promote social, cultural and economic wellbeing.

Delia Sipaco Richards. Since establishing the Phillipine Culture and Migrant Service in 1996, Delia Sipaco Richards has provided invaluable service to the Fillipino and wider Christchurch community.

Layton Ross. For the past two years Layton Ross has spent his evenings repairing, cleaning and repackaging discarded toys to be distributed to those less fortunate.

Cliff Shepherd. Working with the Kidz Need Dadz organisation, Cliff Shepherd has been a crucial part of this charity support team for nearly 20 years and has developed highly regarded courses on fatherhood and anger management.

Shaun Stockman. An innovative businessman and property developer within the central city, Shaun Stockman has also for many years assisted the Crossroads Youth With a Future Trust, supporting at-risk children and young adults in Aranui.

The Vegan Society. Through its monthly night market,  the Vegan Ball, the Vegan Camp and other activities the Vegan Society works to support wider community interest in the ethical, environmental or health benefits of Veganism.