Nearly $2 Million package to tackle homelessness & youth issues in Christchurch

Chris Lynch
Chris Lynch
Feb 22, 2024 |

Christchurch City Council is addressing homelessness and antisocial behavior among youths by allocating nearly $2 million towards various city-wide safety initiatives.

This funding, derived from the previous government’s Better Off support package, aims to enhance safety across the city.

During a council meeting on Wednesday, Mayor Phil Mauger, alongside councillors, green-lit a series of initiatives crafted in consultation with social services providers, businesses, police, and the Ministry of Social Development.

Mauger said “these projects provide an immediate and ongoing response to issues in the city centre and suburban areas across the city.

“It’s a solid program of preventative measures delivered in partnership with government agencies, NGOs, community groups, and Police. These will make a difference in the community.”

The funding allocation includes $560,000 over three years for the Christchurch City Mission to support two outreach positions.

These roles are aimed at assisting individuals across the city by promoting and facilitating access to housing options.

Additionally, Youth and Cultural Development will receive $750,000 over the same period.

This funding is earmarked for a mobile Youth Work Project that will address youth issues and respond to emerging ‘hot spots’ of concern.

In an innovative approach to enhance safety and amenities, three smart poles will be installed in New Brighton, Hornby, and Papanui.

These poles will offer free wi-fi, CCTV surveillance, pedestrian counters, and public alert speakers.

They are also designed with the potential for additional features, such as cell phone charging stations, based on community needs.

$200,000, is allocated to bolster community safety, development, and cohesion in the city’s east, with New Brighton and Woolston/Eastgate each set to receive $100,000.

The council has also earmarked $116,000 for the deployment of future initiatives as new issues emerge.

This announcement comes on the heels of a previous allocation of $244,000 to the Christchurch Central Business Association, aimed at enhancing inner-city safety patrols over three years.

Mauger said “we’ve focused on projects that will have real impact in our communities, making our city safer and improving community wellbeing.”

Chris Lynch
Chris Lynch

Chris Lynch is a journalist, videographer and content producer, broadcasting from his independent news and production company in Christchurch, New Zealand. If you have a news tip or are interested in video content, email [email protected]

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