LAST UPDATED: 27 October 2020

Convenor: Margaret Cook


Phone: 021 022 12120




Diverse housing in attractive suburbs that evokes safety, health and neighbourliness 


We will encourage residents to invest time and energy into their homes to create a culture of pride and community.



Our activities are based on the challenges raised by the community at the inaugural and subsequent public meetings


Issue 1: Concern about untidy empty sections being a health and fire risk, and an eyesore

Plan 1: Encourage ICC to use/enforce bylaws to identify and get offending sections tidied up

Result 1: ICC actively managing situation, with regular monitoring programme. So far many sections cleaned up. Members of the public are commenting positively.


Issue 2: Concern about derelict empty properties being fire and health risk

Plan 2: ICC now has a register of these properties

Result 2: ICC now has a strategy for addressing the issues with. 9 houses already demolished. With a change of policy any further demolitions will be on a case by case basis


Issue 3: Concern about the living conditions in derelict occupied houses

Plan 3: Identify the properties and share information with ICC. Approach ICC to use the bylaws to address any issues therein

Result 3: Properties are identified. Collaborative strategy is being developed. The Housing Action Group is now involved with other housing agencies to advocate for better outcomes for owners of such properties.


Issue 4: Concern about Invercargill housing stock being prone to house fires

Plan 4: Support Fire Service plan with letter to ILT to supply a new smoke alarm to every house in South Invercargill

Result 4:

a. Letter sent to ILT. Positive response – the project is on their list. Fire Service now has a programme to upgrade smoke alarms where needed.

b. Hold Electric Blanket testing days where at the cost of $2 per blanket, a registered electrician will test blankets brought in by members of the wider community

c. Fire Service attends Electric Blanket days to disseminate information about smoke alarms and general home safety, and offer home inspections.


Issues 5: Encouraging pride in the community through well represented properties

Plan 5: a. Hold garden competitions

Result 5 a: Three have been successfully completed, with seven categories in each

Plan 5 b: Replace garden competitions with a Random Recognition project

Result 5 b: Since 2017 one property per month in the 9812 postal area, has been identified as demonstrating the pride of the resident in their property. The resident is presented with a Thank You card from South Alive, together with a $50 voucher from Diack’s nurseries.


Issue 6: Encourage investment of time and energy to create healthy homes through the holding of  public meetings to educate and encourage residents on relevant issues

Plan 6a: Speed dating meetings held with local agencies like Fire Service, Police, Warm Homes Trust, Habitat for Humanity, ICC Environmental Health Dept,  South Alive, Beautification group

Results 6a: 3 meetings held for owner-occupiers, tenants, and later, landlords. Agencies very pleased with the opportunity offered to interact closely with members of the public

Plan 6b: Further public meeting on eco efficient homes put on by ICC Eco Design Advisor

Result 6b: Attendees learned how to make the most efficient and cost effective use of home heating strategies

Plan 6c: Southland Community Law Centre ran a seminar on Rights and Responsibilities of tenants.

Result 6c: A well presented seminar with very useful information

Plan 6d: Further seminar on research into modern trends in housing

Result 6d: James Berghan presented research on modern trends in co-housing both overseas and in New Zealand, then held an interactive session with the attendees on their reaction to the concepts presented.

Note: All seminars had low but enthusiastic numbers of attendees who appreciated the opportunity offered..

Plan 6 e. Hold seminars to inform the public about innovative housing ideas   To that end at least 6 seminars will be held: 3 in 2020 and 3 in 2021. The first on Sept 15 2020 will be about strawbale houses, introduced by architectural designer Jessica Eyers from Wanaka. In October we will explore Tiny Houses and in November, talk about Urban Gardening.

Result 6 e:  Two seminars have been held. Interest and attendance was high – packing out the venue. In September Jessica Eyers, architectural designer from Hiberna, Wanaka, spoke on her family’s experiences building a strawbale home. October saw the main guest speaker Kyron Gosse speaking via zoom, followed by local contributers, Brad Gibson and Ella Lawton each sharing their experiences of building and living in Tiny Houses. The local Council Compliance Officer attended and spoke positively about not standing in the way of these types of lifestyles.


Issue 7: Financing our activities

Plan 7: In an effort to become self-sufficient in carrying out all the planned activities, sausage sizzles will be held four times per year, with 6 volunteers ( 2 teams of 3)  working two hour shifts each on the day. Over 3 years since 2017, 12 have been planned

Result 7: In that time, four have been cancelled; one through inclement weather and one through insufficient volunteers being available. Latterly we have had to cancel due to Covid-19 restrictions. The day garners an average of $300 per day which is sufficient to run the programmes. Hopefully we will be out again in November 2020


Issue 8 Air quality in homes

Plan 8: Attend seminar run by NIWA scientist to learn about a measurement programme

Result 8: Members attended and have taken responsibility for managing the testing devices to be put into homes


Issue 9: Risk management

Plan 9: The group considers personal and public risk associated with their activities

Result 9: Risk register has been developed which is reviewed quarterly for effectiveness and validity.