Press Release – Joint Press Release
In June Healthy Homes Tai Tokerau will celebrate the milestone of retrofitting insulation into 5000 low-income Northland homes. The project was established in 2007 with the goal of retrofitting insulation into 5000 homes in five years.Healthy Homes Tai Tokerau Celebrates making the 5000th Northland home warm and dry
In June Healthy Homes Tai Tokerau will celebrate the milestone of retrofitting insulation into 5000 low-income Northland homes.
The project was established in 2007 with the goal of retrofitting insulation into 5000 homes in five years. “We are so proud to have achieved that goal and to know that those homes are now warmer, drier and healthier for families,” says Healthy Homes Tai Tokerau Governance Group chairperson and Manaia Health PHO Chief Executive Chris Farrelly.
Healthy Homes Tai Tokerau (HHTT) is a joint venture between two Northland community enterprises – the Community Business and Environment Centre (CBEC) in Kaitaia and He IwiKotahiTatou Trust (He Iwi) in Moerewa.
Healthy Homes Tai Tokerau provides free retrofitted insulation for people who own their own home on a low income, and children and families with high health needs who live in rental homes. A subsidy is available which enables landlords to have houses retrofitted for a fraction of the cost of a standard retrofit.
The 5,000 Northland homes have been insulated free thanks to a partnership with a range of supportive third party funders: ASB Community Trust, Energy Efficiency Conservation Authority (EECA), Northland PHOs, Northland DHB, Top Energy and Northpower.
“We welcome the announcement in the budget of more funding for retrofitting and look forward to insulating another 5000 homes in Tai Tokerau. Our goal now is to ensure all low income homes in Northland can be provided with free retrofitted insulation,” says Mr Farrelly.
“This project makes so much sense – if we can keep people’s homes warm and dry we can prevent illness and have less GP visits, hospital admissions and sick days off work and school,” says Mr Farrelly. “The difference this makes to health means this is one of the best investments we can make”, he says.
Every year 1600 excess winter deaths occur nationwide from respiratory and circulatory problems compared to 900 car accident deaths.
The Healthy Homes Tai Tokerau project is based on research by He Kainga Oranga (the Health and Housing research programme) at the Wellington School of Medicine and Health Sciences. This found installing insulation resulted in warmer, drier homes. The study found that adults and children in insulated homes have a 40 – 50% reduction in colds and respiratory problems.
Most houses built before 1979 are not insulated and many more houses don’t have dehumidifiers, heating systems or fireplaces. Some houses in Northland can get down to under 16 degrees Celsius below the World Health Organisations recommendation of 18-21 degrees Celsius or 23 for ill and disabled people. Surveys of time use show we spend 75% of our time inside, and if we are elderly, or ill it is more like 90%.
Healthy Homes Tai Tokerau covers all of Northland, employing seven installation teams using local skilled labour and high quality NZ-manufactured polyester insulation products.
The two joint venture partners that make up Healthy Homes Tai Tokerau are both local community owned, not for profit charitable enterprisesthat are committed to working for our Northland community.