How SVA helped the Canterbury flooding clean up

The rain and flooding that affected Canterbury in the past few weeks left many communities in need of a hand to clean up. With shovels in hand and a trailer full of wheelbarrows, the UC Student Volunteer Army (SVA) teamed up with the Christchurch Tramping Club to lend a hand in a disaster response once again. Four projects were taken on across the Canterbury region covering Geraldine, Glentunnel, Darfield, and Dunsandel.

A group of around 45 volunteers assembled at Haere-Roa carpark for an early morning briefing at 7am before splitting off into groups and travelling out to the locations in the UC and Hyundai vans. Vans were filled with care packages and baking to give to the affected communities, kindly organised by local charity New Zealand Gifts of Love and Strength.

The volunteering involved cleaning fences, moving furniture, and shoveling gravel with most of the projects involving over 6 hours of hard work. Thankfully, all vans made it back by 5.30pm and volunteers were invited to the SVA headquarters for a feed to say thank you for their work. It was amazing to meet some incredible people – both the communities we helped, and the volunteers from the tramping club. So many life stories to be told while we worked away.

Watch the UC SVA channels for more chances to help out and get involved in volunteering!

Your new UC Chaplain has arrived!

Revd Dr John Fox recently joined UC as the new Senior Ecumenical Chaplain. He’s here to help you if you want to chat about something, need a quiet space on campus or want to explore your spirituality. You can chat to Chaplains about everything and anything, no matter what your beliefs are. They are here to help you! But now’s the time to find out more about  John, in his own words: 

Hello, I’m the Revd Dr John Fox,

I’m the new Senior Ecumenical Chaplain, alumnus and disabled person (spastic hemiplegia). I’m a Cantabrian born and bred, the descendant of soil scientists, farmers and gloriously stubborn suffragettes on one side, and first generation immigrants on the other. I was an undergradate at UC 2002-2005, in English and History, and when I got bored I added in a conjoint Science degree in Biological Sciences too. I worked with children and young adults, and then community and family restoration in Aranui, Linwood and then in Clendon, made a bunch of noise about housing, drug rehab, prison and family policy, landed a public policy job, and an English Honours degree. I was an RA and Residential Supervisor for the University of Auckland, wrote half a philosophy primer, some essays on social justice, some research reports I’m pretty sure no one read, and a bunch of op-eds, and tutored in the English Department in renaissance literature until I earned my doctorate working under Tom Bishop (“Framed in Righteousness: Poetry, Imagination and Edification in Early Modern England 1530-1630”). It’s a page turner, and I know at least six people read it.

I was called to the priesthood in 2010, ordained in 2015 (I was stubborn; see suffragettes supra), and after a PG Dip in Theology at St John’s College in Auckland, I was on placement at the City Mission, as a Student Chaplain at Auckland Hospital, and then (permanently) as a disability chaplain, and then later an advocate, as Trustee of Elevate, the Christian Disability Trust (favourite issues: social care, assisted dying, getting the disabled employment rate past 30%). I’m a Postdoctoral Fellow at Laidlaw College, and Priest Assistant in the Anglican parish of Sumner and Redcliffs.

I’m honoured and delighted to be following in the footsteps of the Revd Spanky Moore, whose inclusive warmth is a great gift I’ll miss very much, and the Revd Tom Innes, who had the terrifying job of being Chaplain to Undergraduate me! I’m also very pleased to meet you all. I’m available for students and staff by appointment, so reach out whenever you’d like to. My contact details are below.

As a colleague (albeit a junior and voluntary one), and as alumni, I’m delighted to be back in this place, which was so important in challenging and forming my own thinking through thoughtful dialogue, warm hospitality, and intelligent kindness. I hope only to return the favour.

With best wishes,

Revd Dr John Fox
Geography 404

What’s on at the UCSA to help you through exams

Exams are coming up, so to help you unwind, your Students’ Association has a handy line-up of events, little giveaways and services.

Stress Less Week

Stress Less launches on Tuesday 8 June with a week of study-time giveaways and little activities (think: fruit drops, a resilience workshop, and coffee). Find out more.

Borrow Something

Need a calculator or a charger? Head into UCSA’s Reception to borrow one from us.

More info:

Book study graphic
Free Exam Breakfasts

It’s a staple of the uni calendar. If you’ve got an exam on and you haven’t had time for brekkie, check out our free breakfasts starting from 14 June in Haere-roa (available while stocks last; limit 1 per person, per day). The menu is TBC, so keep an eye on our social media channels for updates and times.

$7 Exam Dinners at The Foundry

Can’t be bothered cooking? Keeping yourself well fed is key when you need to focus on your studies, so let The Foundry take care of dinner.

8–11 June (weekdays only):

Tuesday – Bangers and mash with onion gravy
Wednesday – Vegetable lasagne with salad
Thursday – Lamb curry on rice
Friday – Roast vegetable pasta bake

14–24 June (weekdays only):

Monday – Bangers and mash with onion gravy
Tuesday – Cottage pie with veggies
Wednesday – Vegetable lasagne with salad
Thursday – Lamb curry on rice
Friday – Roast vegetable pasta bake

Available 5pm to 9pm. Each meal costs $7 dine-in and $8 for takeaway.


Sometimes you just need a break. Check out The Foundry bar’s rituals during term time – Quiz Night at 7pm on Tuesday, BINGO at 7pm on Wednesday, and Tunes in The Arvo from 4pm on Friday are gold.

Advocacy and Welfare Support

If you need to talk, our Student Advocate is here to give you advice about your situation, explain what your options are, and also help you navigate the university system. They can help with issues like Special Consideration applications.

Our welfare services are also here. You can find more information on our website.

Where Canterbury students share their experiences.

%d bloggers like this: