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Vanuatu meets Kaipara

Vanuatu meets Kaipara

Kaipara District Council were proud to host a delegation of government officials from Vanuatu recently, including Minister of Internal Affairs, Hon. Andrew Solomon Napuat.

The delegation met with Mayor Jason Smith and Council staff and were interested to learn how Kaipara District Council are working through some challenges the two have in common. Ideas were shared about how Council manage their aging infrastructure through to the best ways to support unique and geographically dispersed communities.

Managing climate change and rising sea levels were high on the agenda, and something that Kaipara are focused on as evidenced in the Long Term Plan under consultation currently.

A highlight of the group’s trip was the visit to the Dargaville Water Treatment plant where the group learnt about how Kaipara secure a river-based water supply, while effectively meeting the supply demands of a rural community.

Mayor Jason Smith said “It was a pleasure to host a small delegation from Vanuatu, including the Minister of Internal Affairs. We bonded over shared stories of small community water systems, communication methods and risks to communities from climate change sea level rises. We also shared a cup of tea and some Kaipara kai, and the Vanuatu delegation sang in three-part harmony. They said their visit to Kaipara was the highlight of their week in New Zealand as we, like they, are a cluster of small communities facing some pretty big challenges.”

The delegation were travelling as part of a program with Local Government New Zealand.


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