The best local government leaders support leadership in their communities
Many Councils grapple with their civic leadership role. Leading from the front is not always the answer. Inspiring Communities in New Zealand invited a range of local government leaders to share their insights into engaging active citizenship in local communities.
Mataura rises to the challenge of population and industry decline
First up, Tracy Hicks, Mayor of Gore, and Jo Brand, Community Co-ordinator, speak about a little place where local government is making a big impact. Jo explains this way. “Our local council added value, resources and connections that were crucial to many early successes. These early runs on the board provided a synergy that attracted other community members to engage in the projects because it was evident that everyone had their shoulder to the wheel.”
Opportunities are flying in Auckland
The Auckland Council is taking on new ways of community development delivery. Advisory services are waning while support is on the rise for social enterprise, resident led and neighbourhood development and local food and community gardening initiatives. Innovation and collective action is on the agenda to address homelessness and the successful transition of young people from school to work, education or training.
Devolution pays off in Thames Coromandel
Laurna White, Senior Communications Officer from the Thames Coromandel District Council, writes about the Council’s major rethink on how to empower its residents and ratepayers by promoting “localism”. Five local Community Boards now make decisions for, and manage, their own community halls, libraries, pools, public conveniences and cemeteries. They also decide how to promote local economic development, community grants and make strategic plans for the area it represents. This has led to improved, better targeted services and projects, more engagement citizens, and reduced rates.
Local government facilitating affordable housing in the Wellington Region
Peter Glensor, Wellington Regional Councillor, reflects on local government’s role in community-led development, showcasing a four way partnership – community sector, private sector, local government and central government – for affordable housing.