On 15th October 2020, Te Āhuru Mōwai hosted an official launch to celebrate the transition of 902 homes from Kāinga ora.
Te Āhuru Mōwai is now the largest iwi-lead community housing provider in New Zealand.
Tā Matiu Rei, Chairman of Te Āhuru Mōwai says the establishment of entity and the responsibility to provide healthy homes is a natural transition for Ngāti Toa.
“We have over 30 years experience in the provision of primary health care within the Porirua and Wellington communities,” Tā Matiu said.
“In that time, we’ve seen first hand the immediate and inter-generational impacts that poor housing can have on the health of many of our whānau and our wider community. Ngāti Toa now has an opportunity to help address some of those issues and deliver locally-lead decisions and support.”
Te Āhuru Mōwai is lead by former Hurricanes CEO James Te Puni. Mr Te Puni said ‘Our project team have spent 18 months preparing with our Crown partners to take on these homes. We have also recruited a passionate and skilled team of staff and service providers primarily from within the Porirua region to do this work with a whānau focus”.
“We are able to create some employment opportunities for both iwi members and others who live in the wider Porirua / Tawa region,” James said. “We look forward to providing more local opportunities as we improve existing homes and build new ones in the years to come. Every whānau deserves a warm, dry and safe home.”
“Our office is based in the heart of Porirua City Centre, reflecting our commitment to build strong relationships with whānau in our community. All current tenants will remain in their homes.
Each tenant household will be gifted a native plant as a koha to reflect the values of Te Āhuru Mōwai. “The native plant represents planting your feet into your land, and starting a new journey in your home with us”.
“Te Āhuru Mōwai is a Māori entity, and as such, tikanga is important to us. The koha to our tenants reflects the values that we promote.”