Let's Walk before we Run.
A number of people have asked about the scope of Our Kerikeri. Is it about ‘place making’ i.e. creating beautiful public places and making our town look attractive and appealing? Well that’s part of it, but it actually goes a lot further. ‘Place making’ is an outcome – based on: how the community interacts and connects, what’s important to us, how we make a living, how we acknowledge our heritage and how we embrace the future. It is no coincidence that the Our Kerikeri initiative looks at four areas of our community: social, cultural, environmental and economic. We call these areas ‘well-beings’. The well-beings framework is one used by local government to inform allocation of resources. On 7 May 2019, the Local Government Community Well-being Amendment Bill passed its third and final reading in parliament. This soon-to-be legislation encourages local government to foster live-able communities, rather than simply focusing on providing infrastructure and core services.
Our Kerikeri has deliberately aligned its scope and approach with this framework. In doing so, we anticipate improved relationships and support from the Far North District Council and other government-based funders. In addition, the well-being framework makes sense. Communities are made up of people who have specific needs and values. While we may end up with a colourful water park for kids, as an example, the starting point is understanding why play areas are important to us – what needs they fulfil and why meeting those needs of the community is so important.
Our Kerikeri is in the process of getting information from those members of the community yet to have their say. With all the data gathered and analysed we will move on to creating a vision for our community, followed by lots of exciting projects. For those of you keen to start painting, digging or hammering, it won’t be long before we get underway. Keep an eye on our social media and look out for our e-newsletters.