A great example of this in practice is the Eveleyn Couzins complex in the Christchurch suburb of Richmond,  where staff, tenants and local stakeholders have established an enduring connection.

The development has 23 one-bedroom homes,14 two-bedroom homes and a large common room, which acts as the ’heart’ of the complex.

A key goal of the complex was to enrich the local community by bringing in various community groups, ensuring our tenants develop strong connections with our staff and each other and to give back to the community.

The design incorporates layout and features reflecting the needs of ageing tenants and smaller families. Crime prevention through environmental design principles were applied, thinking about safety and spaces that encourage social interaction.

The complex lends itself to successful community-based living, both among the tenants as well as the wider neighbourhood.

A neighbouring property, Avebury House, is an example of how a community facility can have a direct connection with our people and their homes.

Built as the Flesher family homestead in 1882, Avebury House was refurbished by the Christchurch City Council in 1999 after many years as a youth hostel. Today, it is managed by a Trust for the community to enjoy through its activities including boxfit, yoga and art classes and the Richmond community garden.

Also nearby is Delta Community House which offers budget advice and other support, community meals a dna café, club days for older people, English language classes and an international playgroup.

Area Manager Fraser Benson summed up the approach best when he said, “this is about building a community for our people but it’s also about building a community for Richmond and Eveleyn Couzins.”

Tenants constantly seek out and interact with local facilities and regularly use the common room for a variety of events, including birthday parties, shared meals and celebrations.

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Page updated: 1 October 2019