Tag: Otara

A Grass Roots Initiative

Taking Pride in Otara Town Centre


I mention the place Otara and I bet most people will think of negative connotations. A real shame as I have never felt threatened walking throw Otara Town Centre but see quite a melting pot of different cultures all blending in together going about their business. Otara like the rest of South Auckland often gets downtrodden on by the rest of Auckland. However, as noted last year South Auckland (and Otara with it) is fast becoming a rising jewel in Auckland’s crown despite the Council continuously dumping what is perceived to be too much resources into the City Centre and Waterfront at the expense of wider Auckland (I will get another post on this up later today). See my South Auckland – The Rising Jewel in Auckland’s Crown on the rise of the South.


A Community Initiative Bringing Pride to Otara

I saw this come up on Twitter last night buried amongst the political chatter:


In short it is a set of four micro-projects enhancing Otara Town Centre while also giving educational tips on waste reduction, recycling and re-using existing materials.

Taking a look at the webpage this is what The Roots are wanting to achieve with Otara Town Centre:


The purpose of this project is to grow creative ways of working that mobilise young people to inspire their friends, family/whanau and wider community to tace action towards zero waste in ways that foster:

• Responsibility to be part of the waste solutions
• Respect for self, family, community and the planet
• Resourcefulness of waste as a resource and entrepreneurship

Creative Community Engagement includes:

• Generating awareness through making that instigates the above
• Harnessing energy of young people to communicate, demonstrate and lead the above
• Showcasing products and means of production that value waste as resources
• Creating a context for creativity around waste minimisation to flourish

NOTE: This initiative will compliment a project with Otara Health for a community waste facilitator/educator who will be working with residents and the wider community to prepare them for the changes to waste collections in 2015-16.

Promo - 4 Projects
Source: http://theroots.org.nz/roots-waste/

The scope of this project is to:

• Creatively engage with young people (with a focus on Maori and Pacific youth) to catalyse and mobilise them to be part of leading a movement of change for reduction of waste to landfill
• Initially focus activity in the Otara-Papatoetoe Local Board area
• Work collaboratively with Otara Health, Cross Power Ministries, MIT, other youth / community focused networks and organizations, and Council to develop an integrated team approach to working in Otara.

A key focus will be to work in ways that foster youth leadership, strengthen Otara / Papatoetoe communities and contribute to social, cultural, economic and wider environmental outcomes. It is envisaged that over time this approach will be extended to work with other communities within the Auckland region and potentially other areas.

To develop a collaborative process to encourage community input to create a Recycled Garden at the Te Puke O Tara Community Centre, to showcase simple innovative ways to grow food and reuse waste material.

To beautify our community by creating four Murals led by local artists working with local high schools in Kew Lane at Otara Town Centre, which will reflect the four main themes: Otara, Cultures, Zero Waste and Matariki.

To build and programme a ‘pop-up’ temporary installation(parklet) which aims to create a sense of community by re-purposing part of a street (carpark) into a public space for creative community conversations with a focus on environmental and waste issues.

To create seven stars that represents Matariki. These stars will be made from plastic bottles, and lit with LED solar lights. This collaborative piece will be installed and suspended in the Otara Town Centre – Fish Canopy “the body of the fish”


Source: http://theroots.org.nz/roots-waste/

The graphics that I have omitted can also be seen at The Roots website


These are the locations of the micro projects in the Otara Town Centre:

Roots Waste Project - Tribe-10
Source: http://theroots.org.nz/roots-waste/

This really looks like a great initiative that will take place on July 5. I might pop down on the 5th and have a look.

Also to note that the Otara-Papatoetoe Local Board are due to start their Area Plan which will include the Otara Town Centre later on this year. Shape Auckland will have the date of when consultation starts on that Area Plan so keep an eye out for it.


Any other local projects out there you think needs a shout out? Flick me an email at view[dot]of[dot]auckland[at]gmail[dot] com or flick me a Tweet at @BenRoss_AKL