Matamata is the town that is racing ahead, famous for its thoroughbred industry, dairy farming heritage, and home of the world famous ‘Hobbiton’ where much of the award-winning Lord of the Rings trilogy and Hobbit movies were filmed. It is also the home of Rotary Matamata who, for the past 70 years, have served our community with distinction.
Rotary Matamata is proud of its fundraising and the differences it has made to communities near and far.
In 2015 Rotary Matamata launched its major fundraiser Concert by the Lake which has become an annual event growing by the year. Local Rotarian Peter Thissen built a specially-designed pontoon for the lake on his rural property from where performers entertain crowds drawn from near and far. Kiwi songstress Jamie McDell is a regular act and has been joined by groups such as The Society Jazzmen, Kokomo, The Tim Armstrong Beatles Tribute Band and for 2017, The Lady Killers and Two Many Chiefs.
Rotary Matamata is a strong supporter of our local Pohlen Hospital and youth projects within our community, including driving the construction of, and improvements to, the Rotary Skate Park and more recently assisting Starfish, our local youth social and health services provider with a van and capital development. In addition, we host and send students overseas through Rotary’s International Youth Exchange programme and offer scholarship opportunities e.g. for science schools, flying school and Outward Bound.
Rotary Matamata participates in the beautification of our wonderful town. This has included; the planting of 100 trees in our Burwood Road Rotary Kauri Grove to mark 75 years and 100 years of Rotary, clearing of the towns SH27 entranceway and the plating of 100 kahikatea trees on Peria Road to mark the centenary of the First World War. Internationally, we have recently supported the construction of a literacy centre in Pakistan, the building of toilet blocks in a school in Nepal and Children of the Forest, a project on the Thai-Burmese border providing protection, healthcare and education to stateless children and mothers, as well as strongly supporting programmes like Shelterbox and Rotary’s polio eradication programme PolioPlus. In 2011 we led the Rotary world raising more money than any other club in a swimarathon for PolioPlus and participating in a swimming world record (the most people to complete 3 lengths of a pool in a single one hour period, which for us in New Zealand was between 1-2am).
But the biggest driver of our success is that we have love what we do and the people we meet through Rotary. If you want to have as much fun as we do, working to help communities, just contact us, or ask anyone of our members about joining Rotary Matamata.
“Come as you are, do what you can”