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Day 4 started off with a beautiful breakfast at XCHC's cafe, which prides itself on locally sourced seasonal food. The Operations Manager, Preston, spoke to us about XCHC, a startup space for the creative industries, and how it incorporates both sustainable and regenerative practices into its business.

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Next up, we chatted with Brie from The Ohu Project and Juliet from ReKindle. The fellows were eager to learn more about the unique approaches these organisations are taking to rebuild Christchurch in a sustainable and ethical way.

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After our bellies and minds were full, we headed to The Commons – a welcoming, ever-evolving community space that connects people to the inner-city and to each other.

We took to a makeshift grandstand, where we were joined by Ryan Reynolds, the co-founder of Gap Filler  (the crew that created the Dance-o-mat and arcade game we played with on the Day 1 walking tour). He led us on a fascinating exploration of community engagement. 

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Riveted by our morning of unique guests, fellows chatted about the resilience of Christchurch, under the trees on the Avon riverbank. After eating a hearty lunch and quenching our thirst with some Karma Cola,  Leyla led a session on the power of research – aka curiosity in action –  and how we can use it in more effective ways. Splitting into 2 groups, fellows were given an observational research challenge.

Short for time, we jumped in Green Cabs and headed to the suburb of Spreydon to the start our afternoon session. Groups were challenged to apply the research strategies they had just learned in a real world setting as they went off to speak with local community members from The Court Theatre and ECAN.

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Back at ArtBox, our homebase for the week, Leyla was eagerly awaiting the arrival of the fellow groups with their new strands of community knowledge. She laid out a huge piece of paper for the groups to start mapping systems and landscaping the connections.

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After a final talk with Ben from Banquer, it was time to call it a day... Almost. Of course, we couldn’t skip Craig’s reflection session! Fellows chose the word that resonated with them the most from this list: intervention, repurpose, perspective and observation.

Collectively discussing their choice and writing statements about why, fellows then chose the word that least resonated, and responded to it. We wrapped it up by describing the day in just one word.

And that was a wrap for Day 4 –  fellows were given a free evening to process everything that has bombarded their brains so far.