Eastern Porirua has one of the highest concentrations of public housing in NZ, with most of these houses built in the 1960s and 1970s. Many of these houses are old, damp and not the size and type that Porirua families most need now, and in the future. Many private rentals are in worse condition, and in both public and private housing in Eastern Porirua there are high levels of housing needs and overcrowding. Compared to the rest of New Zealand or the Wellington area, Eastern Porirua is very ethnically diverse — with high numbers of people from Pacific and Maori communities alongside Middle Eastern, Latin American and Asian groups as well.
In a project of this scope involving so many different people, there can be a perception that the voice of the individual is lost and not counted, and the community of Eastern Porirua had already shown some concern. By this stage, however, HLC had already reached out to us and we had begun formulating an engagement strategy. HLC felt that this was important to capture as they wanted to start a conversation with the Eastern Porirua community about how to unlock the potential for social and economic growth, making it an even better place to live, work and raise a family.