Eastern Bay Energy Trust CONSUMER POLL 2015 | News | Kawerau

Eastern Bay Energy Trust CONSUMER POLL 2015

5 June 2015

Residents in five Kawerau neighbourhoods are living in healthier, more comfortable and safer homes thanks to the Kawerau Neighbourhoods of Healthy Homes (NoHH) project.

NoHH project manager Mary Hermanson said that a 2008 study into the state of ageing homes in Kawerau and the impact these were having on the health and well-being of residents sparked the project. The report showed that many Kawerau houses were built before the 1960’s and many residents were finding it difficult to keep on top of maintenance issues.

The NoHH project kicked off in 2012 and has funding and support from Kawerau District Council, Bay Trust and the Eastern Bay Energy Trust (EBET).

Mrs Hermanson said her team used two equally important approaches to help improve community health and well-being. The first is to help people in the neighbourhood to connect with each other, and to do things, socialise and contribute to local decision-making together. The second approach works on improving health and housing through free home energy and maintenance checks that help residents identify issues such as faulty wiring, insulation, heating, basic home maintenance and energy saving opportunities.

The NoHH team helps people access local services, save money on their power bills and get information and skills needed to deal with basic home maintenance. The team often refers residents to national and local sources of help, such as the EBET’s subsidised home insulation scheme.

“Many Kawerau residents had their homes insulated through EBET’s retrofit insulation programe, and now report that their homes are warmer and drier, and their families are in better health,” she said.

Mrs Hermanson considers the support given by Council, Bay Trust and EBET integral to the program’s success. She would like to see the community show its support for EBET in next month’s consumer poll, by voting in favour of the Energy Trust’s purchase of all Horizon Energy shares. She could see even greater community benefit come from the charitable trust owning Horizon, the local lines company.

“I’m in favour of EBET’s purchase of all Horizon shares and I’ll be voting ‘yes’ in the consumer poll. Why would you vote no? Horizon shares are a very good investment.

If the Energy Trust owns all Horizon Energy shares, then community projects like NoHH will benefit from that investment through the Trust’s community funding schemes,” said Mrs Hermanson.

The Eastern Bay Energy Trust currently grants $1.5 million per year to com- munity organisations including marae, schools, clubs, preschools and district councils. The Energy Trust has returned more than $33 million to the com- munity for energy related projects since it began in 1994.

Any person with a power account is eligible to vote in the consumer poll, to be held between 5 and 26 June.

For further information, please contact:

Don Lewell

Chairman, Eastern Bay Energy Trust Home    07 308 7244

Mobile 027 270 963

Email   dlewell@ihug.co.nz