Residents set goals for Masterton east

By Emily Norman emily.norman@age.co.nz -
5 comments
Michelle Russell, left, with George Rackstraw, Julie Adam, Masterton East community development head, Donna Gray, Te Awhina Cameron Community House co-ordinator, and Peter Knighton. PHOTO/EMILY NORMAN
Michelle Russell, left, with George Rackstraw, Julie Adam, Masterton East community development head, Donna Gray, Te Awhina Cameron Community House co-ordinator, and Peter Knighton. PHOTO/EMILY NORMAN

Masterton East residents bonded over fish and chips to discuss the future development of their neighbourhood at Te Awhina Cameron Community House on Tuesday.

The hui, or meeting, which was attended by more than 30 people, was facilitated by Connecting Communities' new community development co-ordinator for Masterton East Julie Adam.

Ms Adam who was appointed to the role in December said she was attracted to the job because she enjoys the people in Masterton East, enjoys the support she receives and thinks "there are some really good things about this area".

"I feel like there are some exciting things happening in the community," she said.

"With the development of the netball courts, the community gardens, the river work, McJorrow Park, the artwork from the schools, there's just so many exciting things happening for the east side."

A working group has been created to implement ideas and solutions to any issues that residents feel need to be addressed.

"I work with the working group and the Community House to reach out to the community, and we're going to report back on everything, including this meeting, direct to the community," Ms Adam said.

"The main objective of the meeting was for me to be sure about who my working group is, and to gain some prioritising so that people in the community felt that I was following up with things that they think are important, not just me making assumptions.

"Roading and safety was a big issue that was brought up at the meeting; family and support for families was a big one too, and the concept of neighbourhood.

"We've talked about walkways and things that can be improved, and youth," Ms Adam said.

"We talked about things the youth can do that make them feel encouraged and occupied, and somebody specifically mentioned introducing activities that brought parents and youth together.

"So -- perhaps it's games at the park or something like that."

Masterton Mayor Lyn Patterson and Masterton District Council's Maori liaison officer Hoani Paku attended the meeting and shared a meal with residents.

"For many years this area has been known as the Cameron Block, or The Block," Mr Paku said.

"The Block will never ever be Solway, and it will never ever be Lansdowne, and vice versa.

"What is important, however, is that there are many people here today who are passionate about improving their environment, improving their housing needs, and continuing to beautify their surroundings," Mr Paku said.

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