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$10 Million Social Housing Partnership Fund

One of the key ingredients to the ultimate success of this partnership was the collective realisation that we needed to put bureaucracy to one side and get funding out there to get things moving quickly

Sue McKenzie, Lead Trustee


In 2012 Rātā Foundation (formerly The Canterbury Community Trust) set aside $10 million for social housing from a $25 million special fund to support the development of social infrastructure following the devastating Canterbury earthquakes.

The decision to support social housing reflects Rātā Foundation’s long history of working in this area that dates back to its inception in 1988.

After talking to the community the Foundation realised $10 million on its own would not be enough to make meaningful and sustainable changes in social housing, particularly for high-needs tenants.

We realised we needed to embrace a more collaborative model of funding – that a joint venture would ensure that the money would go further and deliver more impact

Sue McKenzie, Lead Trustee

It was this change that led us to develop a $31 million partnership with the government and the Social Housing Unit to deliver 105 new units for high-needs tenants who had been particularly hard-hit by the earthquakes, as well as engaging with community housing providers to deliver the outcomes.

It was clear that a ‘whole sector’ approach was needed to develop community housing for high-needs tenants.

It is Rātā Foundation’s aim in funding social housing projects to not only provide housing to disadvantaged people but also to ensure that those people are catered for by wrapping a social support service around them.

The new partnership means essential housing can now be provided for a vulnerable tenant group.

Kay Fletcher, CEO, Comcare Charitable Trust

The Projects

  • Comcare Charitable Trust - (30 units, 36 bedrooms)
  • Accessible Properties - (16 units, 32 bedrooms)
  • Habitat for Humanity - (21 units, 84 bedrooms)
  • Vision West - (22 units, 53 bedrooms)
  • New Zealand Housing Foundation - (10 units, 35 bedrooms)