Nau mai, haere mai. On 1 October, Housing New Zealand joined HLC and KiwiBuild to form Kāinga Ora – Homes and Communities.

Information on this site is still current. For more information about Kāinga Ora visit the Kāinga Ora website.

Living in colour in Roskill South

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23 August 2019

Crocheted flowers, rainbows and Noddy-style houses are now exhibited on the fence of a Housing New Zealand and Homes Land and Communities (HLC) development in Roskill South, Auckland.

Staff and community members help to install the community mural.

Crocheted flowers, rainbows and Noddy-style houses are now exhibited on the fence of a Housing New Zealand and Homes Land and Communities (HLC) development in Roskill South, Auckland.

The multi-coloured display that captures the Heart of the Community is spreading joy through the neighbourhood thanks to a ‘yarnbombing’ initiative lead by HLC.

Yarnbombing is a type of art where people use knitted or crocheted yarn to make colourful displays that aren’t permanent and can be easily removed if necessary.

After receiving feedback from the community that Roskill South was in need of some colour as buildings are still a work in progress, the HLC community development team brought on Lissy Cole to work some of her magic.

Lissy is an Auckland based textile artist and fashion designer well-known for her public art installations through the yarnbombing movement.

Her kaupapa, she says, is simply “spreading joy”.

Lissy facilitated a series of workshops at the Mount Roskill Development Information Centre where everyone from the community was invited to learn how to crochet and contribute to the community mural.

The team behind this crafty community project says the vibrant displays are helping to give the developments a facelift during the initial stages of construction on site, and engaging locals in what is happening in their area.

Some of the team stand proudly with their creation, with Lissy’s ‘joy-ride’ in the background.

Karla Beazley, Community Development and Engagement Coordinator at HLC says, “The vision was to humanise the building developments in the area and invite the community to contribute to making Roskill South a more joyful and colourful place.

“We also wanted to create a space through the workshops where people could come and chat about the ongoing work happening in their neighbourhood in a relaxed and warm environment.”

The pieces that were lovingly created at the workshops were then installed on fences, thanks to help from community members and Housing New Zealand and HLC staff.

Karla says, “As the art works were going up we had lots of cars beeping when they drove by and excited locals slowing down to find out more about the mural. It’s done a great job bringing people in to the Information Centre.”

Lissy explains to us that art projects like this one are a great way to engage with communities.

“Art on the street is free, it brings a smile and as we have seen, it really can beautify anything—even a plain old fence,” she says.

The team hopes that they can expand on the Heart of the Community project and continue to spread joy around other developments throughout Auckland.

The Mount Roskill Development will see 10,000 new quality homes for Aucklanders. Around 3,000 of these will be state homes managed by Housing New Zealand.

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