Auckland marae to house homeless

Auckland marae to house homeless

An Auckland marae is offering accommodation to those who are homeless.

Te Puea Marae in Mangere Bridge will open its doors to those in need from Tuesday.

"When families come they're going to be in receipt of health checks, of advice around homes, so that in a three-week period the marae is confident the families can move from here into alternative accommodation," says spokesperson Tuku Morgan.

"The marae is opening its gates to all race and creed.  Poverty has no division.  Poverty is colour blind and the gates of this marae are open to all families whoever they are."

Mr Morgan says they've already had a number of inquiries from homeless families.  They've also had calls from social service providers and also corporates offering to help.

Te Puea marae housed a number of families who left Christchurch after the February 2011 earthquake. 

Mr Morgan says he doesn't know how many people in need of housing will arrive at the marae next week.

"We've had major gatherings here that number 400 to 500 people and we feed that many at important gatherings. 

"The marae is built around its ability to look after people.  But I think 400 to 500 people is a big stretch.  We have to be pragmatic and we need to be able to house people comfortably.  Whatever those numbers are we don't know."