Twelve-year-old Linkwater School pupil Sophie Frost got a trip to school she won’t forget in a hurry, when the bright-yellow Naki Boyz fire truck pulled up at her gate just in front of the school bus, and offered to take her to school. Sophie leaped aboard and became an instant hero at her 40-pupil school, where kids and parents greeted the arriving cavalcade.
Then it was on to Havelock School’s 70 pupils where Ford held an impromptu contest to see how many kids can fit in a new Ford Mustang – 16, is the answer – before the convoy left for Canvastown School where its 40 pupils were treated to a magic show.
At Rai Valley pupils held a Q&A, learning what Variety – The Children’s Charity is all about (helping give disadvantaged kids a hand-up) and asking everything from the age of the oldest vehicle (two 1958 Bedford buses welded together) to the age of the charity (it began in 1927), before 21-year-old Basher Mark Wilson talked to the older kids about not letting life’s challenges knock you back – the former paralympian was teased at school for being ‘different’ and is now proving that cerebral palsy needn’t keep you from a business degree or an otherwise full life.
The day concluded with a visit to Hira School’s 60 pupils before reaching Nelson.
On Wednesday (March 16) it wends its way to Greymouth, then Methven on Thursday before finishing in Timaru on Friday.