Help Our Shaken Cachers


Categories: Fundraiser Geocaching News Geocoin Travel Bugs


Buy a coin to donate some coin – that’s the deal in a new Christchurch earthquake fundraiser.

Since yesterday’s devastating magnitude 6.3 aftershock, local vendor Geocachers has begun selling a micro geocoin of the New Zealand flag to support the South Island city’s badly shaken residents.

Each coin costs $15 – slightly more than normal – with all sale proceeds going to an official relief fund, mostly likely the New Zealand Red Cross 2011 Earthquake Appeal.

Co-owner Kevin Swain told It’s Not About The Numbers last night that he’s ordered 150 of the new Oakcoins design for starters and had already pre-sold 64 within a few hours of emailing his customers.

Orders have now come in from Britain, Holland, American, Australia and New Zealand, “making this very much an international appeal”.

Measuring 25mm across by 2.5mm deep, the appeal coin is based on the American geocoin manufacturer’s Mini Flag series but – as  you can see – also includes the word Christchurch and date of 22/02/2011.

Swain quickly organised the fundraiser  with help from Oakcoins and Australian webstore Geostuff soon after the 12.51pm quake struck so, for now, he cannot narrow down when his newly-minted stock will arrive in March.

Across the Tasman, Geostuff is also pre-selling the fundraising trackable for A$10.

As buildings crumble and the death toll keeps rising (75 at last count, with some 300 people still missing), it is inevitable that yesterday’s jolt will also have impacted Christchurch’s 1300-plus geocaches. However, it’s hoped that – like September’s magnitude 7.1 but fatality-free quake – the damage will be minimal. Some local hides have been temporarily disabled while the inner-city remains in lockdown.

Caches which have survived the nearly 5000 tremors felt in the Canterbury region over the last six months certainly make one hell of an advertisement for New Zealand’s brand of lock’n lock containers, Systema.

As we posted earlier, the Christchurch-based GPS Society has a forum thread for local cachers to check in. One Cantabrian wrote: “We will rebuild, we will recover (eventually), but we will never be ‘Christ – church’ quite so markedly as once we were.”

Out-of-town members have offered emotional support or advised that they are en route to help with the ongoing search for survivors and to rebuild the historic metropolis.

On a personal note, Cumbyrocks and myself want to thank all the non-Kiwi cachers who have contacted us with messages of support. As neither of us lives in the disaster zone, we have not been directly affected, but it is heartening to know that in times of trouble the international geo-community has our backs.

As always, we’ll keep you posted on any relevant updates.

* For the latest Christchurch quake news, check out Stuff.


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