Natural Habitats are working with iwi on numerous ecological projects to not only create landscape designs with cultural meaning, but to also benefit local hapu in training.
The latest project completed is Stage 2 of the Ngaruawahia Expressway. Natural Habitats wanted to ensure the local Tainui iwi, derived as much benefit as possible from the project and worked jointly on how youth could be employed. They inducted and trained young unemployed rangatahi into our project teams, who then helped implement the landscape designs.
While planting out Wiri Men’s Prison, Natural Habitats also involved Corrections, so inmates could contribute to improving their surroundings.
Hon Anne Tolley, Ministry of Corrections wrote, “Employment is considered to be one of the most important factors in preventing re-offending, and I would like to express my gratitude to Natural Habitats for offering job opportunities to offenders. Work experience gives ex-offenders a legitimate income, heightened self respect and the ability to contribute to the financial wellbeing of their whānau. Most importantly it leads to better lives and safer communities.”