Economic boost to upgrade Southland marae
Published: 28 January, 2021
The government is investing $9 million to upgrade a significant community facility in Invercargill, providing the wider Southland region with an economic stimulus and jobs.
The multi-million dollar grant is to the Waihōpai Rūnaka Inc so it can make much-needed improvements to Murihiku Marae.
The money comes from the $3 billion set aside in the government’s COVID-19 Response and Recovery Fund to create work opportunities for local tradespeople and contractors displaced by the pandemic’s economic impact.
The funding will be used to complete a new wharekai or dining hall and its associated infrastructure, replace the administration and services hub and allow phased completion of papakainga housing for kaumatua.
Construction of the new facilities will create 33 jobs, with another eight permanent positions opened up when the project is complete.
The marae improvements are expected to benefit iwi and locals, as well as the wider Southland region.
Murihiku Marae is a central hub for the Southland community, providing a wide range of social services and a venue for hosting a large number of events.
Once the construction project is finished, the upgraded facilities will help the marae increase its role as a social services provider.