A new organisation called the Cosy Homes Governance Group
is racing to insulate 1500 homes in the next 10 weeks.
Chairman Jeff Donaldson said the group comprised
representatives from many public and social agencies,
including the Southern District Health Board, Dunedin City
and Otago Regional councils, Work and Income New Zealand,
Presbyterian Support and others.
''It is about improving the quality of homes so that we can
reduce the number of people going to the hospital in the
middle of winter ... there is lots of reasons for it but it
is really about improving the quality of life.''
On Monday the group elected a chairman, delegated jobs to
other members and was offered funds by the Energy Efficiency
Conservation Authority (EECA) to fund the total cost of
insulation for up to 1500 homes.
The catch is that the money must be used by the end of June -
the end of the financial year.
Mr Donaldson said the group wanted to prove to EECA it could
handle such projects, in order to get further funding. It
wanted to get as many houses insulated as possible in the
short timeframe, although he was not sure there was the
''capacity'' to do all 1500.
The group also wanted to get eligible people on its list -
those with a community services card or relevant health
problems - for any future opportunities that arose, such as
free or subsidised heating, double-glazing and thermal
He said there were still many open fires in Dunedin homes
that could be replaced by heat pumps.
A lot of health problems were caused by cold, damp homes in
Blueskin Resilient Communities Trust and Cosy Homes member
Niki Bould said the group was now busy connecting with social
agencies to try to get as many eligible homes insulated as
- by Dan Hutchinson