As you are reading this have a look around, are you in your home sitting comfortably on the sofa, at the table or in your bed?
For many Northlanders, having a place to call home is not a reality – nor is a bed, a couch or a table.
While most of us sit down to breakfast, or pop to the cafe for our flat white, others in our region are living in cow sheds, under tarpaulins, in cars, under bridges, in derelict buildings. Whether you choose to acknowledge what is happening in our own backyard or ignore it, what is certain is that it is not going away.
We have one of the highest rates of homelessness in the country and while central government tries to find a solution, it takes time to make a difference in regions with the complex issues Northland faces.
Reading the stories that reporter Jenny Ling has written for Our Hidden Homeless campaign I have been moved and embarrassed.
Moved by the stories of people who just need a hand in life and the people who instead of doing nothing have made a decision to help. I am embarrassed because I find it staggering that we live in a country like New Zealand that is so progressive in many ways yet we cannot find a way to give people the most basic of human rights: a home.
Kerikeri doctor Simon Bristow, who spoke with us for our series, has it right: "A house should have running water, it should be ventilated and warm and dry. That's the basics of what anyone needs."
A group in the Far North saw the need and made a decision to change things.
The Whakamanamai Whanau Trust, through its "Whare to the Whenua" initiative, is providing portable cabins for those in need; offering a place they can call home.
As trust board member Rhonda Zielinski says: "It doesn't matter how humble your whare is, if it's yours and you know you don't have to move, you can relax."
And that is where you can help.
The Advocate, along with Hits Northland, aims to furnish 10 portacoms with beds, couches, chairs, bedside tables and dressing tables to transform these buildings into homes.
So, if you have any of those items hanging about, and in good condition, we want them.
Everybody deserves to have a place to call home, let's help those in our communities who don't have that.
If you can help, please get in contact with us. Email firstname.lastname@example.org or editor@northernadvocate and we will be in touch about collection. Thank you ...
Rachel Ward is the editor of the Northern Advocate