Funding for cyclone recovery and resilience welcomed

Friday 22 Sep 2023

Eastland Wood Council – Te Kaunihera Pororakauo Te Tairāwhiti (EWC) welcomes additional support for cyclone-affected regions, announced by the NZ Prime Minister this week (read media release).

The industry group is among those in Tairāwhiti that has received funding for workforce and employment initiatives, to provide training and build the workforce for essential recovery and rebuild works. Funding received by EWC is focused on initiatives for women in forestry.

EWC Acting Chair, Warren Rance, is excited by “the acknowledgement by government of not only the importance of the forest industry to Tairāwhiti, but also of the women that provide critical service in recovery operations, management and the future of the industry.”

EWC CEO, Philip Hope, adds that the industry’s greatest asset is its people. “It’s always been about more than just trees or logs. It is about the people who live and work here with their families, and the local businesses that look after them too. People are at the heart of everything our industry does – and it’s great this announcement recognises this.

“In the months that have passed since Cyclones Hale and Gabrielle, our highly skilled workforce has been working hard to tidy up and find ways to improve how we are working to reduce the impact of woody debris on our community. We are also introducing initiatives that prioritise the wellbeing of our workforce, including the Te Kawa a Tāne alliance that uplifts the mana of our kaimahi. The alliance with iwi and government agencies has a vision to keep our people safe and enables whānau to prosper,” adds Philip Hope.

“But there’s more to do, and we look forward to working with our partners to ensure we are creating a more resilient environment for both our workforce and for what happens behind forest gates.”

Source: Eastland Wood Council

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