Ngāti Whare planting seeds of hope

By Kereama Wright

Ngāti Whare's native plant nursery is providing an abundance of hope for their people.  Despite significant challenges in poverty and housing, the creation of jobs has proved beneficial for the descendants of the iwi.

The first seed was sown three years ago and around half a million seedlings have now been produced. 

Just last month, the government's Provincial Growth Fund invested $5.8mil over three years to help develop the business, which currently employs 17 full-time staff. 

The business strategy is to grow the number of jobs to 90.

In addition to the nursery, Ngāti Whare has invested in other industries to advance their people such as eco-tourism utilising their Whirinaki forest.