Strickland, who won a Vonnias Warehouse voucher to the value of $1000, leads a group of eight young boys with lawn mowing and planting initiatives.
He also encourages them to take up formal education at Cook Islands Tertiary and Training Institute in Arorangi to learn more and develop their skills. Teariki Patai, who finished second in the Tupuranga Tangata category, received a Vonnia’s warehouse voucher valued at $800.
Patai voluntarily leads an interactive educational programme for children through gardening and on rainy days, they do fabric painting or sewing.
The Apostolic Church home groups, which have operated for over two years, took third place in this division. The church initiated the home groups so that they could grow their own flowers and pot plants to decorate the church, rather than relying on others.
Round nine of the Cook Islands Tourism Corporation run Vaka Pride competition, held at the end of June, was judged in three categories.
The Tupuranga Tangata category judges villages on their efforts to address issues including crime, dogs and pests, and all other safety-related issues in their communities.
Nominations were received via the village committees, similar to the Peu Maori category and the Vaka Pride Committee awarded special prizes according to the criteria and the effectiveness of the community initiative to address issues of concern.
“Our top three-placing individuals received vouchers from Vonnias Warehouse to the value of an amount to help them to purchase the appropriate tools to continue their good work,” said Cook Islands Tourism’s Sieni Tiraa in a statement.
“Congratulations to all three winners for the good work that they do for the communities, where the tourism industry is able to reap the benefits.”
The Vaka Pride judging takes place three times a year and is conducted by the Vaka Pride committee.
The next judging rounds are in October of this year for round 10, February next year for round 11 and June, 2019 for round 12.
“Round 10 of the Vaka Pride competition is already underway with judging scheduled for October.
Keep up the fantastic community work as you may be the next to be nominated under this category for the Vaka Pride,” Tiraa said.