We want people to thrive
We know how to help people when they experience some of their toughest life moments. We support them with essentials such as emergency food and somewhere safe and warm to sleep, in addition to so much more.
We provide them with much needed counselling and simple human-to-human support. The City Mission literally becomes the only “at least someone cares” point in their lives.
But we also know that with even more targeted support we can do so much more to help people recover their lives and rejoin society in a much better position than when they came to us.
Securing safe, warm and sustainable housing plays a big part in transforming a life and it’s why we work so hard at this. However, another big piece in the jigsaw puzzle of recovery is growing the self-worth, joy and independence that comes when someone, who feels they have hit rock bottom, gets a job.
We’ve literally seen people who experience and achieve this walk taller, speak clearer, hold eye contact for longer, and begin to smile once again.
They begin to “thrive” - to prosper, flourish, grow, succeed.
This is why the City Mission is embarking on a new journey through a range of social enterprises known as Thrive.
These mini businesses with a social heart are a natural extension of the Learning and Development Programme we launched last year to give our people new life and work skills.
Our whanau will move from the programme into safe supported, but real work roles, in the community inside our Thrive social enterprises.
Our Thrive enterprises will lift their lives in a very personal and meaningful way and any benefits from the programmes will support all of the ongoing City Mission’s work.
So what can you expect to see and hear more about? To follow are some of those life-changing transformational Thrive social enterprises.
Thrive Op Shops
Our wonderful Op Shops have been working as City Mission social enterprises for decades and now they get a fresh new look as part of our Thrive mission.
We have already had people transition from clients to volunteers and then staff within our shops and then go on to other jobs. They have shown us what we have to gain in helping people and why we need more opportunities with other enterprises to give people, not only a second chance, but make truly meaningful life changes.
In fact through lock-down period and onwards we have had exactly that. One of our men who came to us in need of emergency accommodation and assistance with some other challenges in his life, has grown and developed to the extent that he is now a part of our Hereford Street store team, and is loving giving back to the community that supported him through the beginning of his new journey.
Our bricks-and-mortar shops are in Hereford Street; Ilam Road, Bryndwr; Buchan Street, Sydenham and Gables Arcade, Rangiora, in addition to our Trade Me store.
A little offshoot of the Op Shops you might spot online, if you are a keen shopper who loves specially chosen vintage items, is our new Thrive Curate page on Instagram.
This is a small catering operation that delivers platters of wonderful food for events and occasions led by our own in-team hospitality experts and trainers.
Hospitality is such a great area for us to be involved in because skills learned by our whanau in this space have such a good chance of leading to work, and are transferable in so many ways.
We see huge opportunities in this for our people, and the enterprise itself will be self-sustaining with any returns being invested directly back in to our wider City Mission work. So customers using Thrive Catering are directly supporting the City Mission’s work at multiple levels.
Our upcoming outlet store will provide us some wonderful retail training opportunities.
This new clothing store will be next to our Bryndwr Op Shop in the Ilam village and will be selling end-of-season branded clothing at bargain prices.
It complements and extends our Op Shop niche of donated, recycled and upcycled clothing, so our approach to offering retail skills opportunities can stretch across a wider range of opportunities.