On Monday, May 16, a special celebrity charity online auction appeal – Stars 4 Kids – will be launched in New Zealand.

Stars 4 Kids has been set up to raise funds for two Christchurch schools, Shirley Primary and Avonside Girls’ High, both badly damaged in the February 22nd earthquake that killed over 160 people and left thousands without homes and jobs. The auction will be run through New Zealand’s #1 auction site – Trade Me – and can also be accessed by Australia.

Some of the biggest names in the entertainment industry have donated signed items along with Academy Award winners Colin Firth (Best Lead Actor in The King’s Speech), Geoffrey Rush, Russell Crowe and Emmy Award winner Hugh Jackman. Kylie Minogue, Jeremy Clarkson, James Nesbitt, Donald Trump, Sir Ian McKellen, Guy Pearce, Status Quo, Jason Donovan, Ruby Wax, Kathy Lette, Sophie Ellis-Bextor and Ross Kemp are just a few who have given their support to Stars 4 Kids.

Stars 4 Kids has been organised by Christchurch mother Mandy Cook, whose children attend both schools. Mandy was formerly a publicist with Network TEN Sydney during the late 80’s and 90’s before returning to Christchurch in the late 90’s. “I wanted to help in some way just like many other New Zealanders’ are doing. I’m very lucky that I can access some of these people and incredibly thankful to all my ex-colleagues and friends around the world who have helped secure these amazing items. People like Jonathon Coleman, ex Virgin Radio, Heart FM and BBC London, also Lyndel Harrison from the Lyric Hammersmith London have been amazing. Unfortunately the UK cannot access Trade Me, but if someone has contacts in either Australia or New Zealand they can get them to bid on their behalf.” All items can be previewed prior to the auction here.

Shirley Primary Principal Sylvia Fidow said today, “Shirley Primary School was greatly affected by the earthquake on the 22nd of February, as one child said ‘there are rivers of liquefaction everywhere at our school.’ One of the most upsetting things has been the loss of our swimming pool. The majority of our students learn about water safety and how to swim in our pool, without it they will not learn how to keep safe near water—vital skills needed in our country. We are very thankful that such a high calibre of entertainers are willing to help our school community.”

Avonside Girls’ High Principal Sue Hume says “Our school suffered significant damage in the earthquake and there is a real sense of loss at not being able to return at this stage to our school. There is also uncertainty about our next steps, as we still await reports and a plan for our future. We know that Avonside Girls’ High School, which has had a strong role in educating girls in the eastern suburbs of Christchurch for the past 84 years, will continue to do so. The money raised from the fundraiser will be of great benefit to the school community as we work together on re-establishing Avonside Girls’ High School.”

Due to the amount of items available, there will be 2 separate lots of Stars 4 Kids auctions. The auctions will commence on Trade Me at midday (NZ time) on the following dates and close 7 days later at 9PM: Monday May 16 and Monday May 23.

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