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Virtuoso Strings Charitable Trust takes out top Porirua award

News - Wellington Community Award winners 2017 - Virtuoso Strings

Above: Virtuoso Strings - winners of the Supreme Awards, with Mayor Mike Tana (left).

Porirua City Council congratulates the Virtuoso Strings Charitable Trust for taking top honours in the Porirua section of the prestigious Wellington Airport Regional Community Awards.

Mayor Mike Tana with members of Virtuoso Strings, Supreme Award winners.

The orchestra took the Supreme Award and was one of five Porirua community organisations announced as category award winners at a ceremony at Pātaka on Wednesday night.

Wellington Airport, Wellington Community Trust and the five local councils join together each year to recognise the valuable work done by community groups and volunteers. 

In each council region, a judging panel selects five category winners, five category runner-ups, one rising star award winner and one supreme winner. The winners from each council region are then invited to a regional awards dinner in October where the regional winners will be announced.

The Porirua category winners are the Virtuoso Strings Charitable Trust, Porirua Schools Garden Club, Bodysweat Fitness, Friends of Mana Island and Te Ara Moana Trust. The Rising Star Award went to Titahi Bay Beach Festival. 

Mayor Mike Tana said Virtuoso Strings Charitable Trust’s Supreme Award reflects the great impact the trust has made bringing music to students in low decile schools in Porirua. 

“They provide free instruments and free tuition to students at low decile schools in Porirua. The trust was established in 2013 and has gone from strength to strength and their students did extremely well in their music exams through Trinity College.”

“The Trust also runs the Virtuoso Strings Orchestra, which rehearses each week in Cannons Creek, Porirua. I’ve had the opportunity to hear the orchestra perform on a number of occasions and they‘re amazing.”

Wellington Airport CEO Steve Sanderson congratulated all Porirua winners, especially the Virtuoso Strings Charitable Trust.

Jo Maxwell, Community Awards Manager Wellington Airport congratulated all Porirua winners.

"We are proud to celebrate the contribution from community groups and volunteers with the Wellington Airport Regional Community Awards each year. Congratulations to all the winners from the Porirua region, especially Supreme Winner Virtuoso Strings. We were impressed by the many thousands of volunteer hours dedicated to changing young lives through the gift of music." 

Liz Kelly, Wellington Community Trust trustee, praised the work of the volunteers. “The awards are one way that Wellington Community Trust can say thank you for the extraordinary work staff and volunteers contribute day in day out, building the richness and diversity in our community. To all the winners of the awards this year, congratulations – and to the supreme winner, Virtuoso Strings thank you for your tireless passion, belief and commitment to the children of Porirua.”

Porirua Category Winners and Runners-Up


Winner:  Friends of Mana Island – a group helping to restore the natural environment and restoring air quality in the Wellington region. They also educate children as families often join guided trips, about ecological restoration.

Runner up: Pest Free Plimmerton – have engaged their community and inspired neighbouring suburbs to take up the predator free challenge.  


Winner: Bodysweat Fitness – helps the fitness and wellbeing of the Pasifika and Māori population in Porirua East providing early morning and Friday evening and Saturday morning classes.  

Runner up: Lions Club of Titahi Bay – runs the early morning market every Saturday and have established a Lions Den room in Ronald McDonald House. 


Winner: Te Ara Moana Trust – a unique skills-based programme aimed to develop children’s skill and confidence in the water.    

Runner up: Wellington Riding for the Disabled – provides equine assisted therapy programmes for riders with disabilities, for both individuals and groups of all ages from the Wellington and Kapiti Coast regions.


Winner: Porirua Schools Garden Club – teach gardening, cooking skills, science and sustainability to children and help with extra jobs in the garden teachers and caretakers don't have time for.

Runner up: WELLfed – provides the opportunity for parents to learn how to feed their families well, with free cooking classes at Holy Family School in Cannons Creek.      


Winner: The Virtuoso Strings Charitable Trust – provides free instruments and free tuition to students at low decile schools in Porirua. 

Runner up: Porirua Little Theatre – produces theatrical shows for the people of Porirua and the greater Wellington region.


Winner: Titahi Bay Beach Festival – the group organises a Beach Festival at Titahi Bay Beach once a year, bringing local residents together for a leisurely day and to highlight the beauty of Titahi Bay Beach. The emphasis is on providing mostly free activities for children and adults.

Runner up: Outpawed Rescue Trust – rescues, desexes and rehomes stray and feral cats.  


Virtuoso Strings Charitable Trust

28 Jul 2017