Regional | Cyclone Gabrielle

High-powered hui planned to discuss Te Tai Rāwhiti recovery

Iwi, civic, community, and business leaders from across Te Tai Rāwhiti will discuss what they hope is a practical and achievable future strategy for the East Coast region later this month.

A year on from Cyclone Gabrielle, the East Coast region is still suffering from its devastating effects.

As well as local leaders, the Tai Rāwhiti Tomorrow Together Summit will also be attended by cabinet ministers including Transport Minister, Simeon Brown, Māori Development Minister Tama Potaka, Regional Development Minister Shane Jones. Cyclone Recovery Minister Mark Mitchell will join via video link.

Tūranganui a Kiwa (Gisborne) mayor Rehette Stoltz says the summit is a collaborative effort to find solutions to repair the vast damage to the region’s infrastructure, including roads.

“The Tai Rāwhiti Tomorrow Together Summit shows a genuine desire to work together collaboratively to address the challenges. The right central government interventions will have a substantial impact on lifting our region’s prosperity for the benefit of all those who live here.”

“The hui will focus on the many opportunities and challenges that the region faces acknowledging the socio-economic challenges in health, education, crime, employment, and the lack of quality housing.”

Census data shows the majority of people who live in Te Tai Rāwhiti are Māori.

Ngāti Porou chairperson Patrick Tangaere says four of the region’s iwi, Ngāti Porou, Te Aitanga a Mahaki, Rongowhakaata, and Ngāi Tāmanuhiri, have a track record of working together to develop innovative solutions and will play a major part in ensuring the hui is successful.

“Te Tai Rāwhiti communities are strong and resilient, and our people are proud. There is a clear understanding of the challenges and priorities and iwi have been working closely with council, community, and business leaders to tackle the issues in an approach that is whanaungatanga-based and manaakitanga-driven.

“Our approach to lifting the well-being of our people has always been about developing enablers from which sustainable and meaningful activity can grow. This focus will be extended through the summit and the resulting plan”.

Te Rito