Mahi and milestones

ŌCHT chief executive Cate Kearney

ŌCHT chief executive Cate Kearney

It’s been a year of challenges and achievement, writes ŌCHT chief executive Cate Kearney.

Kia ora, and welcome to the end of a year unlike any other. We were all part of the team of five million that kept the global pandemic at bay, and we’ve embraced the learnings from the challenges.

The disruption caused by Covid-19 could have derailed much of what we wanted to achieve this year. That it did not is due to the hard work of so many people.

The ŌCHT team worked through lockdown to continue delivering our essential service to the more than 2300 people we support. We ramped-up communications to keep tenants informed and to help our communities keep safe. Our team had 13,610 calls with tenants during Levels 4, 3, 2. It was appreciated — the annual  Tenant Satisfaction Survey found 92% of tenants were satisfied with our approach.

Our new Hastings St East homes opened the day before lockdown locked-down our building programme. Remarkably it had no lingering impact; our contractors clawed-back lost time. Tīwaiwaka Lane’s Homestar 6 rated homes opened in July, just three days later than planned, and Reg Stillwell Place opened on time.

ŌCHT provided 59 new homes and more are on the way. We’re diversifying and will provide more 2, 3 and 4-bedroom homes to cater for couples and families. It is very special to be with people when they realise they have a place to call home, and we’ll do it again when the first 90 homes at our Brougham St development open in January 2021. ŌCHT is grateful to its partners, including the Christchurch City Council and the Ministry of Housing and Urban Development, for helping to make this happen.

The pandemic could not slow the Warm & Dry Initiative. More than 2200 heat pumps were installed by our fantastic Warm & Dry team. The satisfaction survey found 93% of people are satisfied with their new heat pump, and 84% agree their house is warm and weathertight. We are grateful to the Council, which owns many of the properties we lease, for the major contribution of funds to an initiative that aims to have all homes meet the government’s Healthy Homes Standards ahead of the 2023 deadline.

Our satisfaction survey says we’re doing a great job in many other areas. Our levels of service measures met all targets, and 82% of people were satisfied with the quality of the tenancy service we provide. Among the many highlights is proof our maintenance teams are transforming the properties: 79% were satisfied with the condition of their unit, up from 61%.

It really has been a BIG year as we build for the future and do all we can to help tenants achieve their aspirations. Thank you for your efforts, for the support you have shown, and for wonderful contribution during an unusual time that challenged us all.

I wish you a wonderful festive season, from me and everyone here at ŌCHT.

Ngā mihi.

Cate Kearney

ŌCHT chief executive


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