This year, Otangarei Papakāinga Limited (“OPL”) will develop a fit for purpose transitional housing papakāinga in the suburb of Otangarei.

The plan draws on the concept of traditional village living, ‘It takes a village to raise a child’ and ‘It takes a papakāinga to support a whānau’. OPL’s leadership believes that the social dynamics at play in a papakāinga setting can provide a natural form of support to whānau, from the inside out.

Alongside the ‘bricks and mortar’ of the papakāinga build, whānau will have access to the support services offered by OPL’s parent, Te Hau Āwhiowhio o Otangarei Trust. The Trust has developed a breadth of experience in social and health services, youth justice, mental health and addictions and employment pathways, over the last three decades.

OPL’s CEO, Martin Kaipo believes that wellness starts in the home, “Safe secure housing is the priority. However we believe it is simply not enough to provide somewhere to live; whānau in urgent need of social housing tend to require a range of support in a number of areas.”

The desired outcome is happier healthier whānau and, as a result, less support required from the government over the long term.

The project is supported by Te Puni Kōkiri and the Ministry of Social Development as part of the Government’s focus on ending homelessness and ensuring whānau Maori living in safe secure healthy homes.