Following a lengthy application process Abbeyfield NZ was approved as an accredited social housing provider in January. This enabled us to complete a Relationship and Grant Agreement with the Social Housing Unit, a Government department tasked with growing the third sector housing capability in NZ. This RGA enabled us to then apply for grants for Christchurch projects. The initial outcome was announced on Friday: $1.25m in total for the projects in Hornby (a suburb of Christchurch City) and Leeston (a small village 40km south of the City).
This funding is sufficient to allow both projects to proceed. We have secured the sites, have mortgages approved and have been successful in attracting over $2.1m additional philanthropic funding from the Canterbury Community Trust. Total cost of the two projects will be $4.4m.
Needless to say there was much celebrating over the weekend in Abbeyfield. The local committees have been working for several years to develop these projects and deserve congratulations for their perseverance and sustained commitment.
The Hornby project has been tendered and we meet on 4 April to select a preferred tenderer who will take up the project, complete detailed design work, obtain the necessary consents, and construct. It might take more than a year before residents are in place because availability of construction material and labour is in short supply in Christchurch. The house will provide sheltered housing (as you call it) for 12 residents with an attached housekeeper flat.
In Leeston the project is just applying for resource consent (a prequel to everything else). It is therefore running a few months behind Hornby. We are planning a 14-resident house with attached housekeeper flat.