$3million for building a Katikati Abbeyfield House

The Abbeyfield house will cater for 14 residents aged over 65. Photo supplied.

The development of a new shared housing facility for older people in Katikati is close to becoming a reality, with most of the funding needed for it now secured.

The Abbeyfield house will cater for 14 residents aged over 65, providing affordable rental accommodation where they can enjoy the company of others.

A site for the house has been purchased, in Wills Rd, and nearly $3 million raised towards the house’s development, through local fundraising, grants, donations, sponsorship and other contributions.

Abbeyfield New Zealand Executive Officer, Susan Jenkins, says this meant only $280,000 more now needed to be raised.

“While there are still some funds to raise, we are almost there,’’ she says.

“Abbeyfield appreciates funding support for the project from the Ministry of Housing and Urban Development’s Affodable Rental Pathway.

“We also commend Abbeyfield Western Bay of Plenty for its active fundraising campaign, which has been instrumental in progressing this project.”

Abbeyfield Western Bay of Plenty chairperson, Carole Parker, says it was exciting to be nearing the goal of getting an Abbeyfield house built and the final stage of the fundraising campaign would now be launched.

Various events and activities were planned.

They included offering people an opportunity to sponsor a garden stake, created by local artists, which would form part of the landscaping for the house.

People could sponsor a stake for a donation of $5,000 or more.

She added that the Abbeyfield house was badly needed, as there was a lack of affordable and suitable rental housing for older people with limited means in Katikati.

“This house will be an ideal solution for our community. It will be a place where residents can maintain their independence but live in a supportive, caring environment,” she says.

“They can build social connections and live healthier, more active lives.”

The Abbeyfield housing model is often likened to flatting for older people.

Residents live independently, with their own studio room with ensuite, and come together to share meals prepared by a housekeeper/cook.

They live like a big whānau or family, sharing communal living areas.

There are 14 Abbeyfield houses already operating in New Zealand and the Katikati house will operate along the same lines.

Abbeyfield houses have been in New Zealand since 1992.

They are self-funding once established, with the rent covering operating costs.

Each house is managed by a local Abbeyfield committee, made up of volunteers. The volunteers’ contribution ensures the rent remains affordable and the residents are well supported.


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