Chelsea Routhan from Big Brothers Big Sisters and sponsor Sally Russ from Nelson Airport with some of the online auction items that are up for grabs. Photo: Kate Russell.

Charity auction goes virtual


With their annual charity auction cancelled due to Covid-19, Big Brothers Big Sisters have decided to take it online.

The not-for-profit organisation, which matches kids with adult mentors, was due to hold their sold-out charity event this Friday at the Trafalgar Centre.

“We had 230 people due to attend, but unfortunately with the uncertainties around Alert Level 2 we had to make the call to cancel the event,” says programme director Chelsea Routhan.

In order to still raise some much-needed funds for the organisation, the auction has moved online via a platform called GalaBid, with 40 donated items up for grabs.

Benjamin Black Earrings, a Maruia River retreat, an insulation package, Lego, wing lights from the old Nelson Airport terminal, wine, a Deadly Ponies handbag and a $4000 orthodontic voucher are some of things listed.

The auction is now live and bidding closes on Monday, 31 August at 8pm.

Chelsea says that past events have raised $50,000 for the organisation and she hopes they can still pull in a decent amount this year.

“Obviously, having a live auction would have been great, but hopefully we can get more people involved this way.”

Chelsea says the auction would not be possible without the generous help of the community and their sponsor, Nelson Airport.

“We are completely reliant on the community for donations. All the money absolutely goes back into Big Brothers Big Sisters.”

Proceeds from the auction will go directly towards matching young people in Nelson and Tasman on their waiting list, as well recruiting, training, supervising and supporting their 200 active matches from Hira to Golden Bay.

You can check out the auction at