Topic: Housing

Stressful time finding a fixed abode for mother-of-10

By Aroha Treacher

It's been an extremely stressful time for a 39-year-old mother, who has no other choice but to cram her 10 children aged from 2-years old to 21-years old, in a small three bedroom state house in Maraenui.

Solo mother, "Airihi", who has preferred her name to remain anonymous, says “It's horrible, I hate it here, I don't like having people here. I don't like taking people in my lounge because of the beds.”

While she is grateful for the roof over her head, living in overcrowded conditions is taking its toll on her family. Her pleas to Housing NZ to move them into a bigger house have gone unanswered for two years, so she has looked elsewhere.

“So far this year, I've rang through to twenty houses that’s private and through rental agencies and I've just been told no, no, no” says this mother of ten.

John Key made a fleeting visit to Maraenui last week as part of the housing re-development project in the area, where residents voiced their concerns, but the anger and frustration of locals like her are now at breaking point.

It's not an easy road for any mother who is the sole income provider for her children, and all she is asking for to lighten the load is a bigger home for her family.