Prisoners' plants sold to raise refuge funds

JO MOIR
Last updated 05:00 16/11/2012
Taranaki Women’s Refuge project co-ordinator Lee Brumley
ROBERT CHARLES/FAIRFAX NZ
PRISON PLANTS: Taranaki Women’s Refuge project co-ordinator Lee Brumley with some of the many plants for sale at the weekend after being donated when the prison nursery closed.

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Plants grown by New Plymouth prisoners are being used to help Women's Refuge.

More than 2000 plants left over when the New Plymouth Prison nursery stopped trading at the start of the month are being sold this weekend with money raised going to the refuge.

Taranaki Women's Refuge project co-ordinator Lee Brumley can't believe they are the lucky recipients of the plants.

She said their sale could raise as much as $5000.

"They just wanted to help us out and we've had so many people come forward to help us with getting everything ready," she said.

The Taranaki Women's Refuge deals with 1500 incidents a year and $5000 will go a long way to helping those women and children, Mrs Brumley said.

"We've never had a donation like this before or collected money in such a big way so it's really exciting.

"The money will just go into a pool and be used for women and children's needs as they arise."

The New Plymouth Prison nursery ran for 14 years, growing native trees and shrubs as part of Corrections Department training and work opportunities for prisoners.

After plans to close New Plymouth Prison were announced, about 60,000 native plants were transferred to Whanganui Prison where the nursery operation is continuing.

The plant sale is being held on the corner of Hobson and Leach streets after owner Phil Brown offered the site free.

Mrs Brumley said volunteers from New Plymouth would help out with the sale on Saturday and Sunday from 9am till 5pm.

"We've also had volunteers from New Plymouth West Rotary helping us unload all the plants while Hookers Transport are moving the plants for us for free," she said.

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