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Prominent Queenstown hotel donates $15k to Christchurch mosque survivor

Photo Credit: REUTERS/Jorge Silva

Prominent Queenstown hotel donates $15k to Christchurch mosque survivor

A Queenstown hotel has donated $15,000 to a man traumatised by the Christchurch terror attacks.

Prominent Queenstown hotel donates $15k to Christchurch mosque survivor

The Rees Hotel Queenstown has donated $15,200 to Yama Nabi, a Christchurch man whose father was killed in the Al Noor mosque shooting after the New Zealand Accident Compensation Corporation (ACC) refused to help him.

Nabi was left traumatised with flashbacks of the shooting, unable to work, with children to feed and a mortgage to pay. As he had no physical injuries from the attack, he was not eligible for compensation from the ACC and had to return to his work as a butcher, struggling with flashbacks from the day.

The Rees Hotel Queenstown held a silent auction and a special Winemaker’s dinner in April with all proceeds originally going to the Victims Support “Christchurch Shooting Victims Fund”. After seeing Nabi’s story, General Manager of The Rees Hotel Queenstown Mark Rose shared the story with his colleagues, and they agreed the money raised should go directly to Nabi. 

“We felt it was a much better fit to give him the money as he was so in need, and New Zealand doesn’t support people with mental health issues, and we all feel that’s not right,” said Rose. “[It’s] a good fit for the hotel as he is a halal butcher and we buy halal meat at times for our guests and it seems more personal.”

“Yama called me in tears to thank us all for assisting him in this way – he was quite overcome,” Rose said. He also invited Nabi to stay at the hotel so him and his family could have a complete break.

Nabi said thinking about the donation made him feel like crying as it showed how much support there was for the Muslim community in Christchurch. “I would like to say thank you very much. It means a lot that people care”.

The assorted auction items donated by the hotel and its suppliers ranged from; Curated boxed wine, a VIP vineyard tasting, tickets to selected premium wine maker showcase events at True South Dining Room, a scenic helicopter flight over Cecil Peak and the ultimate 5 night stay in a luxury Rees Residence with a personal travel curator on call.

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