Issue #5: December 2020

Christmas Fun in Naenae

Christmas in the Court is back for 2020. This action-packed festive occasion, organised by the team from Oasis Church with the support of Hutt City Council, promises to be a rocking music fest.

The star-studded line-up includes the hugely popular YouTube and recording artist Wayno, and the Brown Hill Band - a renowned Wellington group who are internationally recognised session musicians. Other local talents include Starr Masae, Amba Holly, and Callan Melaugh, making this an event not to be missed.

Pastor Daryl Green says, "Our wish is for the community to come together and have a cost-free evening of fun. Especially on the back of Covid - we were never sure this event was going to be able to take place, and now it is - so what a great way to celebrate our build-up to Christmas in Naenae.

There will be something for everyone - free merry-go-round and ferris-wheel rides for the kids, spinning art, spot prizes, lucky dips, and giveaways, including a food hamper draw valued at over $200."

He says they are also working on having a celebrity dance-off so any celebrity contacts who’d be keen to get involved would be most welcome.

Daryl particularly wants the event to celebrate and build on the momentum for positive change that is taking shape in Naenae after years of ongoing losses.

"With the planned construction of a new pool, and the completion of several new houses in Naenae, there is a feeling  of renewal for Naenae - we want to celebrate this."

Giving Back

Clench Enoka is an exceptional young woman. Born in Kenya to parents escaping the wars in South Sudan meant Clench spent the first three years of her life in a Kenyan refugee camp.

In 2003 Clench's family came to New Zealand under the United Nations refugee resettlement programme to eventually settle in Naenae. She attended Rātā Street School, Naenae Intermediate, and Naenae College, where she was a mentor in Year 12 and a
prefect in year 13, before going on to Massey University where she is currently completing a degree in Graphic Design.

Clench has attended Naenae Clubhouse since she was 11 years old and is now working part-time on the staff, giving back to the organisation that helped guide her towards finding her passion for art and design. 

“It was at Clubhouse that I first discovered computers and learned about photoshop, and began to see the possibilities of design.”

In 2016 when Clench's family moved to Australia for work opportunities, she chose to stay behind to finish her schooling at Naenae College and go on to University. Living with the Kirkland family from St David’s church provided a more in-depth insight into New Zealand culture and helped her develop a sense of independence for which she is very grateful.

"A recent return trip to South Sudan with my family helped me reconnect with my culture and made me realise how fortunate I am with the many opportuni0es given to me in New Zealand. I now do not take the little things for granted.”

Clench credits the schools she went to and her ongoing association with Clubhouse for helping develop her leadership skills and enabling her to pursue her passion for graphic design. Her latest Clubhouse project is working collaboratively with older interested students to develop a documentary to celebrate Naenae Clubhouse's 10th anniversary. "I want to tell the Clubhouse story and at the same time, challenge myself and others to learn new skills. I am learning all the time.”

Looking to the future Clench says she would love to be able to set up a branch of Clubhouse in Kenya or Sudan. "I want to use my design and art skills to do good in the world.”

Mayor’s Update

Kia ora Naenae,

I want to give you an update on the Naenae Spatial plan, as public consultation for the plan has now concluded.

During our public engagement process on the spatial plan we carried out Community workshops from August to September, followed by wider community engagement in October.

We wanted to be open and transparent with you, and really listen to what the community has to say on the issues facing the Naenae community. As Mayor, it’s a priority for me that Council engages in a genuine way with our local communities.

In total, 569 people provided feedback on what Council can do to revitalise the Naenae town centre. Specifically, spatial plan proposals looked at confirming the site for a new pool and community facility, how we can help give the Hillary Court shops an uplift alongside a possible new supermarket, where new housing spaces could go, and also how we can improve better access to the central areas of Naenae to increase activity.

Council is now moving forward to finalise plans at the next full Council meeting at 2pm on 8 December, and will move to incorporate the outcomes of the spatial plan into our Long Term Plan. If you’d like to, you can speak at this meeting - email

I’d especially like to mention that we will be working alongside the community on the detailed plans of the pool rebuild in the lead up to construction, which will commence in July next year.

I also want to take this opportunity to wish you a very Merry Christmas and a Happy new year. I hope you get a well deserved break. There is no doubt that 2020 has been tough, so I hope you are able to take some time to recharge your batteries, and get ready to take on 2021.

Have a happy and safe holiday. See you next year, Naenae.

Campbell Barry, Mayor of Lower Hutt

Content paid for by Hutt City Council

The Good Samaritans

It would be hard to find a better example of 'walking the talk' than St David's church in Naenae. Living their Christian philosophy of "love our neighbour as ourselves,” the church has been and continues to be involved in some transformational projects for the greater good of the community.

The church rebuilt under the leadership of Reverends Martin and Alison Robinson, with huge help and support from a growing team of dedicated parishioners making a difference for many people in Naenae.

Healthy Food

In 2015, partnering with Regional Public Health and Wesley Community Action, church member Jill Kirkland and her team set up the first Fruit and Vegetable Co-op which provides parcels of about 8kg of fresh fruit and vegetables to registered members each Tuesday. Any local can join the Co-op and prepay $12 for each order. (Sign up via the St David’s church website, or pop in to 3 Seddon Street on a Tuesday to enquire).

Affordable Housing

Tackling the affordable housing issue in Naenae head on, the church has moved from protest activism to becoming landlords and advocates in their efforts to house and look after those in need. In 2015, they built two units on church land. In 2017, a St David’s team led by Wayne Kirkland established the visionary Koinonia Community Housing Trust to fund the building of 5 one and two-bedroom warm, dry and secure affordable housing units on land they were able to purchase next to their Church on Seddon Street. The church currently provides much needed housing through a vicarage, seven units and some private homes.

Support for Hillary Court

In 2018, the church supported the seong-up of an independent charitable trust to run the Trade School Kitchen - now a much loved and valued cafe in Hillary Court. A cafe with an inner-city vibe and a social conscience, with a goal to provide employment pathways that help people gain skills and get into the rhythm of working life, be part of a team, and then move on to other employment in the hospitality industry.

Then in 2019 after talking with a range of significant parties about the church's concern for solving the problems in Hillary Court alongside the need to support the homeless and those in sheltered accommodation who gather there, the church opened Te Puna Manawa drop-in centre. Open for three hours each workday and staffed by a group of volunteers, the centre's kaupapa is to provide a safe, friendly community space in support of the street community in Hillary Court, underpinned by the core values of Manaakitanga: kindness, hospitality and caring for others.

And last but certainly not least, the church community partners with Naenae Nature Trust to replant native trees, restore  waterways and to beautify Naenae.

Martin has a challenge for well-off, well-meaning citizens: “You tell me you care about the poor? Then tell me their names. What
are their names?" For Martin, many of those ‘names’ have become extended whānau. The St David's parish knows the names of many of those in our community that need our help and support - Do we?

Community Corner

CoCo Pop Up: A Community Space for Naenae

Nau mai, haere mai; welcome to COCO POP UP - a community space at Shop 2 Hillary Court, supported by Hutt City Council.

This is a “test” space, currently available until the 18th of December. Please drop in for a kōrero.

  • Community Coworking Space: Monday and Tuesday 10am - 2pm.
    All community groups welcome. Groups that have “popped in” to spend time in this space so far include Team Naenae Trust, Trade School Industries, Wesley Community Action, Naenae Residents’ Association, St David’s Anglican church, The Naenae News, Hutt Timebank, and Kiwi Can Do (to name a few!). 
  • FREE Weaving Workshops – Wednesday, Thursday and Friday 10am-2pm (lunch break 12-1pm). Drop in any time.
  • Fishbowl Collective have artwork on display & available for sale.

* If you would like to book the space please see our friendly Naenae Library staff *

The Big Read and The Little Read at Naenae Library

Our summer challenges for tamariki aged 0-12+ are back! 

Research shows tamariki can maintain and even increase their reading levels if they keep reading over the summer break.
Tamariki ages 5+ can sign up at their local library for The Big Read. They get to read books, complete fun tasks by 31
January, and be in to win awesome prizes.

The Little Read is for our littlest library people under 5 - simply complete 10 activities together!

 For more information:

Team Naenae Trust 

We are very excited to introduce our new Team Naenae Trust Coordinator, Gina Flynn, and our new Naenae Village Market Coordinator, Adrian Nicholas, to the Naenae community.

They are both lovely and very approachable, so feel free to introduce yourself and make them feel welcome!

  • Naenae Village Market: every Saturday from 11am - 2pm.
  • Team Naenae Trust meetings: first Tuesday of the month, from 7 - 8pm. (First meeting of 2021 will be Tues 2 Feb).
  • Special Christmas breakup and AGM: Tuesday 8 December from 7pm. Light refreshments provided. (You are welcome to bring a plate).

Wesley Rātā Village Christmas Lunch

Join us for our Christmas Community Lunch on Wednesday 16th Dec from 12:30 to 2pm. Gold coin Koha. All welcome - bring a friend! Find us at the top of Rātā Street.

More info:

Naenae Resident's Association

Follow for details of our next public meeting to help explain the changes to our rubbish system (date TBC), and info about FREE arts workshops in Naenae.

Wheels and Cane Day

12pm Friday December 4th in front of the Dowse Art Museum, Laings Rd. (If wet: inside Hutt City Council Building)

Let’s tell Council what needs fixing around Lower Hutt to make it more accessible for everyone.

Open to all - including anyone who uses a wheelchair, walking frame, or cane. Parents with prams and all others with mobility issues are also welcome.

Contact Naenae News