Paying it forward with a barbecue


Stirling resident Robert Aramoana is holding a free barbecue for the community in order to get to know people and “just be a good guy”.

Mr Aramoana moved to the Clutha district from the Hawkes Bay area in February.

“I’m the sort of person people who see me might not want to come up to, but I’m just a normal guy. I like to give, but this is the biggest give I’ve done.”

It would involve cooking hundreds of sausages and patties either bought by him or given by people in the community.

“Any help is welcome, but if we run out, I’ll just buy more.”

He had already received donations of ice blocks and fizzie drinks from Raylene Johnston at The Mack barber in Milton and was loaned a barbecue by The Warehouse.

“I just went in there looking for one and saw a member of staff walking around who turned out to be the manager. He was happy to help us out.”

He had also spoken to emergency services for support on the day, and hopes a fire truck and an ambulance will attend for children to have a look at.

Mr Aramoana has two young children of his own, which he said fuelled his desire to be a good person.

“I made some bad decisions in my past and then I had kids and realised what life was all about. I just like to make people happy.”

He hoped to make it a yearly event, or even more often.

“There will be a barbecue table for people to sit at and talk and all sorts of things.

“I’d like it to get even bigger next time. We could do it more than once a year if people like it.”

The barbecue will be held on Saturday, November 30, at the playground in Lanark St in Balclutha.