Kaitaia's He Whanau Marama Charitable Trust has won the Community Group category of Keep New Zealand Beautiful's Wall Worthy competition, against strong opposition from throughout the country.

The trust is now looking forward to making the transition from design to reality, project manager Micah Tawhara saying it was a fantastic win for the town.

"Kaitaia receives a lot of negative publicity, and we have to handle some tough hits sometimes," she said.

"We try to focus on the positives, and one, for sure, is that we are surrounded by the most beautiful landscape.


"Winning this competition has not only boosted our self-esteem, but it is going to help us inject love and positivity back into the middle of our town, where the beauty of our whenua will merge into our township and community."

Keep New Zealand Beautiful CEO Heather Saunderson said studies had shown that mural art boosted civic pride and reduced anti-social behaviour (such as littering and graffiti) in their vicinity, and her organisation was thrilled to help He Whanau Marama Charitable Trust make its corner of New Zealand even more beautiful.

The Wall Worthy competition ran in schools throughout the first term, with the winners being decided by public vote. Almost 2000 votes were cast, the winners receiving electronic prizes, along with a $750 Resene paint voucher and other materials to create their murals.

The winning designs in five categories can be seen on the Keep New Zealand Beautiful website.