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Soaking it up . . . Waitaki’s Tongan community are raising funds for their families back home in Tonga by holding car washes in Oamaru. PHOTO: SUPPLIED

The Waitaki Tongan Community Trust is soaking up the opportunity to help families in Tonga.

The trust hosted its first fundraising car wash on Saturday and raised $3000 to help those affected by the volcano and tsunami that devastated much of Tonga on January 15.
Waitaki Tongan Community Trust president Livai Veituna said there was ‘‘lovely support’’ from the public.

‘‘Not only [our] community but the whole village of Oamaru, all the people of Oamaru, they are willing to help,’’ Mr Veituna said.

The trust would hold car washes at the Iconix car park opposite Orana Park every Saturday until the end of February.

Its aim was to raise enough money to send a shipping container of supplies to Tonga.

Food, clean water and other basic supplies were desperately needed there.

Soaking it up . . . Waitaki’s Tongan community are raising funds for their families back home in Tonga by holding car washes in Oamaru. PHOTO: SUPPLIED

Mr Veituna said the fundraiser had been a good opportunity for Waitaki’s Tongan community to come together and support one another.

‘‘We are here to help Tonga recover at this difficult time,’’ he said.

‘‘Our community is willing to come and stand together for us.’’

A combined Tongan church service, organised by the Rev Lakepa Finau, had been scheduled to be held last Sunday but it was cancelled after the announcement all of New Zealand would move to traffic light setting Red.

Another car wash will be held tomorrow, from 10am to 4pm.