New dawn for Pasifika housing in Porirua

Source: Q and A

Three hundred Pasifika families in Porirua will get the chance to own their own homes in a move the Minister for Pacific Peoples is describing as unprecedented and historic.

Aupito William Sio told Q+A that the $49m allocated in May’s budget is going to "achieve something really significant for our families here, but also for the young people coming through."

Porirua has 7500 Pasifika people, living in 2000 households, the vast majority of which (1600) are rented.

Helmut Modlik, the CEO of Ngāti Toa, which has First Right of Refusal over 2000 former Kainga Ora houses, was a key part of the move to ensure sites for 300 homes were earmarked for Porirua’s Pasifika community.

He recalls a hui with community leaders at Cannons Creek were Pasifika leaders spoke of their “feelings of powerlessness really” and he felt compelled to respond. “I feel comfortable that my old people were giving me a nudge to pay attention to this need here.”

It’s the first partnership of its kind between the Government, iwi Māori and Pasifika with Sio hoping it will be the first of many.