Te Aroha Noa Community Services (TANCS) is a community development agency based in the suburb of Highbury, Palmerston North.
First initiated in 1989 by the Central Baptist Church of Palmerston North, the organisation is committed to unleashing the potential of whanau and the whole community through providing integrated, holistic services that have arisen from ongoing community research.
‘A feature of our approach is the encouragement of community members to actively participate in unleashing the potential of their own livesand of the community’ explains Bruce Maden, Founder/Project Manager, TANCS. ‘Our services aim to empower community members to take responsibility for the development of their own solutions. Weassist with this using a methodology that creates an ever-expanding number of community members who have experienced transformation of their lives. This creates a critical mass change point that impacts the values of a whole community. Ultimately this model may have widespread application to other communities in the future.’
This approach has led to the development of a range of wrap-around services that whanau can participate in on their journey to hauora or wellbeing.
These include whanau based early childhood centres that are underpinned by a Parents as Involved Educators kaupapa, whanau development services such as the HIPPY (Home Interaction Programme for Parents and Youngsters), the Incredible Years Parenting Programme,Adult Education, a Practice Teaching and Research Hub in partnership with the School of Social Work from Massey University, Community Development initiatives,He Ngakau Ora Health Services including Tamariki Ora services, a Paediatric Clinic, Medical and Dental Centres, Counselling Services(Play and Family Therapy as well as individual therapeutic services), Intensive Whanau Support services (social work) and He Ngakau Rangatahi and He Ngakau Matua youth centred programmes and services. Te Aroha Noa has also initiated Te Whare Atawhai – a whanau supported housing initiative using leased housing from Kainga Ora. This is an area TANCS hopes to expand further to address chronic housing needs.
These services were focused on the lower socio-economic and multi-cultural suburbs of Highbury, Takaro, Westbrook, Cloverlea and Awapuni,but extend to the entire Palmerston North City and wider Manawatu region.
‘The greatest resource any community has is its people and particularly its tamariki or children’ explains Bruce. ‘Transforming the lives and imaginations of people to show the incredible resources that lie within a community, and what can be achieved when these resources are effectively harnessed is part of what Te Aroha Noa Community Services aims to model.’
Our core objective is to: Encourage empowered,self-managed, community through providing early intervention, integrated, holistic services to the community.
Over the past 30 years this has led to the purchase of 11 adjacent homes, additional land from Kainga Ora, the leasing of another adjacent property and the development on this site of a range of purpose built or renovated buildings that facilitate this mission. Our facilities are now valued at more than $5 million.
Te Aroha Noa Community Services (TANCS) has been a long-term investor and borrower with Christian Savings. Baptist Savings and Development Society, now Christian Savings assisted with the development since 1990.
In May 2020, Christian Savings provided finance to purchase an additional house next to the current complex.
‘The Te Aroha Noa Chairperson, Ms Josie Te Kahu and I met with James Palmer who reviewed both our overall Development Plans and Financial Reports. He recommended that we were too reliant on Government contracts and suggested that we diversify and maximise our income streams,’ explains Bruce. ‘He put us in touch with Gavin Hazleden at Astute Education, to review and make recommendations for maximising our income stream from our Early Childhood Centre as well as encouraging us in developing our partnerships with businesses such as Health Hub NZ and Highbury Health.
‘Dan Mazengarb continued providing support as we transitioned to a more financially sustainable model. The changing of our mindsets in relation to financial sustainability and helping us to lay a sound financial foundation for ongoing growth has been of huge importance to Te Aroha Noa’s ongoing development. In many ways the discussions and contacts have been of greater importance than the provision of loan finance.’
On investing with Christian Savings…
‘I would strongly encourage such investment. Christian Savings is a highly strategic financial institution that is revolutionising the development of local placed based Christian mission to our communities.
The provision of financing is allowing the enhanced development of innovative responses to community needs including social housing. Through relationships within community, organisations such as Te Aroha Noa continue to show that Christians are vitally engaged with the needs of disadvantaged communities.’
On borrowing from Christian Savings…
‘I would highly recommend speaking with Christian Savings.Their recommendations and connections are extremely valuable. They areextremely good at moving you beyond self-imposed constraints that limit yourvisioning of possibilities.’