Celebrating community resilience and farming excellence

25 March 2024

A message from Tararua District Cyclone Gabrielle Recovery Manager, Don Cameron.

I recently had the privilege of spending time with residents from Makuri and Alfredton at their local halls as part of our Community Emergency Hub Project. We were delivering goods identified to help future-proof communities, and it was heartening to witness the strong turnout of community members eagerly awaiting the delivery of these essential items.

Among the items were maps, resilience boxes, and various other supplies, the vast majority of which were purchased locally. These resources were identified as crucial for ensuring these communities could remain connected and support themselves for a short period of time, in the event of an emergency or another adverse weather event.

It has been really rewarding to be part of this project and ensuring our more remote communities have what they need to get their communities through if they were to be impacted again. A lot of work has gone into this project and seeing it progress and putting items into the communities’ hands was a great achievement.

Last week I attended the Property Brokers Tararua Excellence in Farming Awards. Both the Council and the Recovery Team took great pride in supporting this event, providing farmers from the Tararua District with an opportunity to attend this event at no cost. With a focus on wellbeing, the event celebrated some of the exceptional businesses, professionals and people in our agricultural district. It offered farmers a well-deserved break, good food, great company and a few laughs.

While the challenges of the past twelve months remain fresh in people’s minds, events like these are a great opportunity to connect with fellow farming businesses facing similar circumstances. Sometimes, just knowing that you’re not alone can provide much-needed solace. Congratulations to Mathew and Marilyn Prior who farm at Makuri, for being named this year’s Property Brokers Sheep and Beef Farm Business of the Year. Congratulations also to Jane Tylee from Tararua Rural Support Trust for being named Tararua Rural Professional of the Year, a very well-deserved award.

As we transition into Autumn, NIWA forecasts the current El Niño is expected to ease by the end of the season. Autumn temperatures are projected to be above average in the North Island, while rainfall and soil moisture levels are anticipated to be near normal. It is worth noting, expect stronger than usual winds during this period.