Post sponsored by NewzEngine.com

Source: New Zealand Government

The Government is backing rural communities across New Zealand by investing in a growing number of rural community hubs, says Rural Communities Minister Damien O’Connor. 

“These hubs are an important part of the work we do alongside rural New Zealand, supporting local efforts on-the-ground to ensure communities are resilient and connected,” Damien O’Connor said.  

Since the programme was set up, funding has been allocated for 20 hubs in rural areas across the country. 

“Our hubs programme is backed by $1.12 million over three years and is providing a boost for communities where basic services are out of easy reach. 

“The latest community to benefit is Ruakituri in northern Hawke’s Bay, where $32,000 has been allocated to the Wairoa Community Development Trust. 

“By partnering with rural communities facing challenges these hubs help strengthen residents’ resilience and wellbeing.” 

The first hub was established at Tikitiki on the East Cape in December 2019.  

“Since then, we’ve funded community-driven initiatives from the Kaipara district in Northland to Middlemarch in Otago, with three more in the pipeline.” 

“The Norman Kirk Memorial Reserve Committee has been allocated $40,000 this month to create more opportunities to bring residents together on the Chatham Islands. 

“No two hubs are the same. They’re set up by local people who’re responding to local needs, whether that be a mothers’ group or education programmes for young farm employees.” 

The rural community hubs programme is part of the Government’s Fit for a Better World roadmap, which aims to support strong, sustainable rural communities and grow the food and fibre sector workforce by 10 per cent by 2030. 

“On top of the funding we’re providing for hubs, $1.29 million has also been allocated over three years for new wellbeing initiatives to complement our support for Rural Support Trusts. 

“Those initiatives are bolstering services that help improve the mental wellbeing of rural Māori, young farm employees, farming mothers, migrants and remote rural communities facing challenges. 

“Access to support, advice and mental wellbeing services will help rural communities build their capacity to respond to change, which is vital as we navigate the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic,” Damien O’Connor said.

Rural Community Hubs supported to date: 

Financial year 

Location 

District/region 

2019/20 

Tikitiki  

Gisborne  

 

Taumarunui  

Manawatū-Whanganui  

 

Tuturumuri  

Wairarapa  

 

Kekerengu  

Marlborough 

2020/21 

Raetihi  

Manawatū-Whanganui 

 

Tapawera  

Tasman 

 

Whanganui River  

Manawatū-Whanganui 

 

Reefton  

Buller 

 

Te Kōpuru  

Kaipara, Northland 

 

South Westland  

Westland 

 

Waipoua  

Kaipara, Northland 

 

Whare Manaaki  

Greymouth 

 

Ruawai  

Northland 

 

Strath/Taieri  

Middlemarch, Otago 

 

Eastern Taranaki  

Strathmore, Taranaki 

 

Ōpuke  

Mid Canterbury 

 

Hakataramea  

South Canterbury 

2021/22 

Wairau Valley 

Marlborough 

 

Ruakituri, Wairoa 

Hawke’s Bay  

 

Chatham Islands 

 

 

Details of the latest rural community hub funding announcements: 

 Ruakituri:  

The Wairoa Community Development Trust has been allocated $32,000 to establish a rural community hub at Ruakituri in northern Hawke’s Bay. The area’s residents face a 100km round trip to the nearest town. The proposed hub will offer a range of skills, health and a wellbeing courses and a programme of community events. A top priority is catering for an influx of young farm employees whose arrival has highlighted the need for courses on first aid, and chainsaw and quad bike safety. 

Chatham Islands: The Norman Kirk Memorial reserve Committee has been allocated $40,000 to establish a rural community hub on the Chatham Islands. The committee will use the funding to employ a manager to develop and implement an expansion programme with a focus on creating opportunities to bring people together. 

MIL OSI