Christmas Message from EAP Services

Kia ora,

The end to another year is fast approaching and 2020 will be remembered by many as one of extraordinarily unusual demands and challenges.  

Our December 2020 e-Flyer highlights tips to help prepare for and enjoy the end-of-year holidays.  These include:

  • Tips to help prepare you for the season
  • Tips to assist with feelings of loneliness and isolation
  • Check-in on the elderly
  • Reminder that EAP Services is here 24/7 throughout this holiday time

Please make safety a priority, whether that be at home, on the water or on the road … take the extra time to read and follow the information on these useful links to ensure all return to work in 2021 well and well rested.

Wishing everyone at University of Canterbury, plus your families and whanau, a safe and happy holiday.

Students’ Association helps to feed future generation of Christchurch students

The University of Canterbury Students’ Association (UCSA) will help fuel a younger generation of students’ learning as part of its new contract to provide school lunches in Christchurch.

The Association has won a contract with the Government’s Ka Ora, Ka Ako | Healthy School Lunches programme, which provides nutritious lunches every school day to primary and secondary school pupils from participating schools. The programme is being rolled out nationally to address food insecurity among kiwi youth – something intensified by the COVID-19 pandemic.

According to the Ministry of Education, around one in five children in New Zealand live in households that struggle to put enough good-quality food on the table. Ka Ora, Ka Ako is targeted at schools and kura where students are facing the 25% highest level of disadvantage and socio-economic barriers that could affect access to education, achievement and wellbeing.

Under the programme, the Association will produce and distribute around 3,000 lunches a day across 10 schools from the Christchurch city district.

2020 UCSA President Tori McNoe said they were proud to be a part of the project. “It’s a really unique circular economy that allows various wins and opportunities for current and future generations of students to benefit from the scheme. It also allows us to build our connections with the school community.”

And it isn’t just primary and high-school students that will benefit. The UCSA will be putting the funds it receives from the contract back into its charitable work supporting University of Canterbury students. All proceeds from their commercial operations are used to deliver a range of services that include advocacy and welfare, early learning centres, and club support.

The UCSA will begin delivering school lunches across the district in February 2021.

For further information on Ka Ora Ka Ako | Healthy School Lunches programme

Ka Ora, Ka Ako | healthy school lunches programme – Education in New Zealand

Major expansion of school lunch programme |

Save the Date: “UC Women Celebrate, Connect, Collaborate” Research Symposium 9 June 2021 – on campus

Please note the following research symposium “UC Women* Celebrate, Connect, Collaborate” on 9 June 2021 in your calendars now!

This will be full of fun initiatives, such as the transdisciplinary wicked problems World Café, Mentor in the Moment and the Workshop World ‘Unconference‘ session. Throughout you will meet and engage with new collaborators/mentors. Panel discussions will include Kaupapa Māori Research and Vision Mātauranga, and collaboration in a COVID-world.

Expressions of interest and nominations for the most pressing problems to be addressed at the wicked problems café will be sought in early 2021.

If you have any questions, don’t hesitate to contact a member of the organising committee: Karen Mather (People and Culture), Ximena Nelson (Science), Tara Ross (Arts), Misty Sato (Education, Health and Human Development), Anna Earl (Business and Law), Megan McAuliffe (Dean of Postgraduate Research), Geertrui Van de Voorde (Engineering), Ann Brower (Science), Liz Brown (Deputy Assistant Vice-Chancellor Māori, Pacific and Equity), Catherine Woods (Business and Law/Admin Plus).


* The event will be open to academic staff who identify as female.

ACU News and Funding Opportunities

Make the most of our membership of the Association of Commonwealth Universities (ACU).

Included this in this month’s newsletter:

  • Catch up on The Internationalist  (podcast)
  • Queen Elizabeth Commonwealth Scholarships – close on 18 Jan 2021
  • New Commonwealth Peace & Reconciliation Challenge Grant applications now open – close on 15 Jan 2021
  • Future of Higher Education: Opportunities and Challenges virtual summit – 4 December
  • Going Global 2021 call for proposals – close 15 Jan 2021
  • What’s the place for reparations at universities?
  • Belonging at university – an equal future?
  • Making digital higher education a reality for all.

Plus, sector news:

  • UNESCO ‘World in 2030’ Public Survey: climate change and biodiversity loss biggest concern by far, multilateralism and education most important solutions [UNESCO]
  • COVID-19 crisis accentuating the need to bridge digital divides [OECD]
  • OECD and UNDP launch a plan to align global finance with sustainable development [UNDP]

Karen Mather, People and Culture (formerly HR)

Record numbers for Te Mātāpuna Mātātahi | Children’s University Graduation 2020

A record number of tamariki have graduated from Te Mātāpuna Mātātahi | Children’s University (CU) in 2020. Over the 25 and 26 November, 362 children aged from 7 to 14 crossed the stage of the James Hay Theatre in the Christchurch Town Hall to accept their graduation certificates.

With the challenges of 2020, an incredible 65% of CU tamariki graduated in front of their proud whānau, teachers and peers. IN 2020, tamariki completed 3,466 activities on the online portal, and a total 19,537 hours of CU learning.

The CU team would like to thank all the UC students and staff who contributed to the programme over the course of 2020. It would not have been a success without your valuable support.

Keeping UC staff informed