BOPDHB Checkup April 2019 | Page 20

Nik Gregg and Trieste Ngawhika inside their storage facility which holds items ready to support healthy homes. Support whānau to stay healthy with warm, dry, homes through BOP Healthy Homes Making sure families and whānau are living in warm and dry homes is a key part of staying well as we approach the cooler months. That’s the mission of BOP Healthy Homes. The Ministry of Health led inititiave established five years ago sees the team from BOP Healthy Homes visit homes of low income families and whānau with tamariki under five. BOP Healthy Homes provides whānau with the “know-how” to make homes as warm, dry and healthy as possible. In the Bay of Plenty the initiative is provided by Tauranga Community Housing Trust and Sustainability Options. Trieste Ngawhika from TCHT says, “The team is passionate about supporting whānau to stay well. The service provides a whole raft of things such as blankets, bedding, heaters, insulation, curtains and clothing. It also provide community workshops, helps link families to funding for repairs and maintenance, and where needed, will help families find a new home. Basically anything to help the family to enjoy a warmer, drier and healthier home.” Nik Gregg from Sustainability Options says the programme has had enjoyed wonderful feedback and support since its inception, with hundreds of families speaking gratefully of the support they have been provided. For information about referring your patient and or their whānau contact the Healthy Homes Administrator on 07 571 5390 or [email protected] or the BOP Healthy Homes Coordinator on 027 8784020 or [email protected] Since it was established in 2014, the team has visted about 1000 homes across the region and helped more than 4000 families improve their living conditions. 20 Cold, damp, crowded homes can increase the risk of respiratory issues and other preventable health conditions, such as rheumatic fever and skin infections. There is strong evidence, nationally and internationally, of improved health outcomes resulting from warmer and drier homes.