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Kiwi visitors use isolation time to help out SPCA

Tuesday 22 March 2022 | Written by Al Williams | Published in Local, National

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Kiwi visitors use isolation time to help out SPCA
Tourists Scott Billings, from left, Nathalie Bernard, Jenny Marshall-Kay, Scott Brew and Shaun Kay are stranded in isolation on Rarotonga and have set up a Givealittle page which as of 5pm yesterday had raised $1300 for the Cook Islands SPCA. Al Williams/22032110

A group of Kiwi visitors stranded on Rarotonga because of Covid-19 are using their isolation time to help others.

Scott Billings Nathalie Bernard, Jenny Marshall-Kay, Scott Brew and Shaun Kay have been hit hard by Covid, having forced them to hunker down in isolation at Te Manava Luxury Villas and Spa after three of them were infected.

They arrived on the island on March 11 with the intention of taking a break and enjoying a variety of activities.

Their hopes of a dream holiday were dashed when Shaun came back from a fishing charter on Wednesday last week and was feeling unwell.

A RAT test showed a positive result while Jenny and Scott consequently returned positive results a couple of days later.

The five of them, all dog lovers, had already visited the Cook Islands SPCA a couple of times on early in the week to walk the dogs.

Auckland residents, Jenny, Shaun, Scott and Nathalie all own Siberian huskies so they put their heads together and thought of a way to use their isolation time productively.

They set up a Givealittle page in aid of the Cook Islands SPCA with the aim of running laps around their accommodation to raise funds for a new dog enclosure.

The Make Jenny and Nathalie run in isolation page had raised $1290 of a $3000 goal yesterday.  

The five friends have been posting photos and videos of their isolation pursuits to social media. 

“We are stuck with Covid in Rarotonga so raising money for the Cook Islands SPCA while here.

“If you have a spare $2 every bit counts,” the team said.  

“So friends, you may have seen we are in isolation in Raro. before that we met all the beautiful dogs at Cook Islands SPCA.

“The amazing team running it desperately need some moolah for fences and a puppy enclosure.”

Nathalie said she had contacted Cook Islands SPCA shelter manager David Pokia ahead of launching the Givealittle page.

“We asked David what he needed, he wanted to build puppy enclosure … David and the SPCA are doing a great job, I think Jenny and I would have done something for them regardless of Covid.”        

Pokia said he met the group last week when they came to the SPCA to walk the dogs.

“They came in a couple of times, of course with one of them getting Covid-19, they were meant to leave on Saturday, they spoke to me through Facebook, and set up a Givealittle page.  

“Straight away when they went into isolation, they talked about helping out.

“Our perimeter fence has been completed, now we need a compound.”