Inside the Box to Raise Funds for Heritage Centre

The Ashburton Museum and Ashburton Art Gallery are working together with the Council to raise funds for the fittings and furniture for the new Ashburton Art Gallery and Heritage Centre.

The fundraising campaign has been titled "Inside the Box" and is being driven by a committee with representatives from all three organisations.

Council representative Don McLeod says the Art Gallery and Museum have always known they would need to raise some of the funding required for things like displays and storage equipment.

"The Council budgeted $450,000 from the outset as a contribution to fixtures and fittings with the remainder to be fundraised," he said.

The fundraising got a major shot in the arm earlier this year when the Council applied for and received a $700,000 grant from Lotteries NZ. This provided a $200,000 kick start to the campaign to fund the fixtures and fittings.

Mr McLeod says the organisations now need around $500,000 to have everything in place for opening in the middle of 2014.

"We are very confident we can get our community on board with this campaign and we will raise the amount needed," he said.

The committee has been boosted by the addition of local identity Kevin Soster as "funding champion" for the campaign.

Mr Soster says he didn't need to think twice when asked to join the campaign.

"The Ashburton Art Gallery and Heritage Centre will be a wonderful asset for the district and something we can all be proud of. I am only too pleased to be involved," he said.

Mr Soster will work with the committee to approach potential funders and front the public fundraising campaign.

Bev Tasker and Bernard Davidson, who chair the Museum and Art Gallery committees respectively, are also excited by the campaign.

"It is just wonderful to see everyone working so hard together to make sure the Art Gallery and Heritage Centre is fitted out to a standard that enables us to deliver exhibitions the community wants to see and will be proud of," they said.

There will be a number of fundraising initiatives making up the overall "Inside the Box" campaign.

Things kick off this weekend with a stall at the Ashburton A & P Show. Don McLeod says this is a chance for the organisations to introduce the project to wider audience and to answer questions people may have about the new Art Gallery and Heritage Centre.

"This project has attracted an extraordinary amount of misinformation and this weekend will give us the opportunity to provide residents with some facts and show just what the new facility will deliver," said Mr McLeod.

Next Friday night the Ashburton Art Gallery is hosting a "Light the Art" event at the Ashburton Art Gallery to raise funds for the lighting required in the new Gallery.

Gallery director, Shirin Khosraviani says over 100 invitations have been sent out and anyone wanting to come along can get in touch with the Gallery for details.

Residents wanting to donate to the "Inside the Box" campaign can contact Kevin Soster at Heartland Bank or can drop their donations off to the Ashburton Museum, Ashburton Art Gallery or the local branch of Heartland Bank.

Page reviewed: 30 Oct 2013 4:30pm