NPDC community fund helps open the door to homes for the disabled

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With hundreds of people waiting for state houses, New Plymouth District has huge shortage of affordable housing and for someone in a wheelchair or with other physical disabilities the challenge to find suitable home is even tougher.

Barrett Homes Trust fills a gap by supplying specialist housing, built with extra-wide doors, accessible bathrooms and kitchens and other features to help people with physical disabilities.

The charitable trust rents out 15 units at two sites in New Plymouth and one in Inglewood, work supported by the $24,000 a year for three years received through NPDC’s Community Services and Programmes Fund. The funding helps with running costs as it plans to build another two specialist units in New Plymouth.

“We have a waiting list of about 10 people at any given time,” said Barrett Homes Trust Manager Mark Hay.

“Our tenants could not live independently without our managed units because traditional houses in the New Plymouth District don’t suit their unique needs. Most tenants stay for years or even decades so it’s rare that units become available.

“The grant from NPDC helps cover our ongoing costs so people with disabilities can continue to enjoy living independently within a supportive environment and ensures we can continue to serve this community whilst working towards our vision of meeting the needs of more people with disabilities,” Mr Hay said.

The Community Services and Programmes Fund supports grassroots and volunteer groups in projects and programmes that benefit the community.

“We’re committed to providing healthy and affordable homes for vulnerable elderly through the Council’s 140 Housing for the Elderly units and we’re working with partners such as Barrett Homes Trust who provide homes for other vulnerable people,” says NPDC Manager Community and Economic Development Damien Clark.

“Our community funds support groups and projects that promote connected and engage communities as we build a Sustainable Lifestyle Capital for all our residents.” said NPDC Manager Community and Economic Development Damien Clark.

Applications to the fund are open until 30 June.

For details and to apply go to our website or call the Community and Economic Development Team on 06-759 6060.

Caption: Barrett Homes Trust Manager Mark Hay (left) with residents Tony Read and Gavin Parker at the Barrett Street units in New Plymouth.