FREE RIDES: Children, like Te Mauri Keno will be able to enjoy free rides on the motorbikes. Photo supplied

MAN Up and Legacy Coastline are thrilled to be organising a free whanau day next week.

The community event to be held at Rex Morpeth Park in Whakatane on Friday, December 7 is expected to attract over 1000 people from around the Eastern Bay.

Man Up Coastline co-ordinator Dean Davis says it will include 1000 free hangi, free barbecued steak sandwiches, free rides for children, free entry to win a trailer load of food, prizes and a lot more.

“This is going to be another amazing and positive event for whanau in our community.

Everything will be free for adults and children and we are honoured to be able to put on such an event for all to enjoy,” he says.

The whanau day is part of Man Up and Legacy’s nationwide Tour of Duty ride to reduce Maori offending rally – with Man Up and Legacy Coastline collective to wrap up the campaign for the year.

FAMILY AFFAIR: Man Up Coastline co-ordinator Dean Davis says the whanu day is an event for the whole community. D7652-12

The Man Up and Legacy Coastline’s tour will start at 4pm where more than 100 Man Up and Legacy motorcycle riders from around the country and dozens more supporters are expected to congregate at Rex Morpeth Park for the event.

There will also be a ‘New Approach Hui’ at 6.30pm at the Whakatane War Memorial Centre where event attendees will get to hear stories from ex-gang members and how their lives have changed for the better since being connected to Man Up.

On Saturday, December 8 riders and supporters will travel to Opotiki and then on to Gisborne where the tour will end.

“We have a great line up as our riders and supporters travel through our towns. We will have a free barbecue in Opotiki, as well as prizes and most importantly, people will get to meet and listen to the stories of our men and women who have changed their lives since joining Man Up or Legacy,” Dean says.

“This tour isn’t about giving a hand out but it’s about giving hope to individuals and whanau to show them that there are people who care no matter what situation you are going through or have been through.”

Man Up has been running successfully in the Eastern Bay for over three years, while Legacy was launched in March 2017.

The empowerment programmes for men and women have been recognised throughout New Zealand and Australia for positive changes in reducing dysfunction within our communities.

There are currently 33 groups that run weekly in the Eastern and Western bays and make up the collective Man Up and Legacy Coastline (covers Te Puke, Kawerau, Te Teko, Whakatane, Ohope, Opotiki and Gisborne areas).

“Man Up and Legacy is non-government funded and facilitated by local volunteers who are passionate about helping people out of their dysfunction and seeing them make positive choices in life,” Dean says.

“We appreciate all those organisations and individuals on the Coastline who have been supportive of our kaupapa over the years by giving us koha or venues and the tour of duty will also be another opportunity for us to celebrate our kaupapa and to say thank you to our supporters.”