Minister of Energy and SL Housing

13th January 2016 | Posted in Nigel's Blog

New day and great to welcome Katherine back after a month’s break in England. Our talks covered thinking about a school for a village of 344 – how many primary school children, what facilities, how many in a class, how many toilets, kitchen facilities – all what fits the culture and give the children the best chance.

Met Lavern and her team at the SL Housing Corporation (see photo) – Great lady and so full of enthusiasm for us and for housing people. We looked at their vision to build 500 homes on a 200 acre site (ours is 344 on a 20 acre site) at a cost of $15-£25000 per house. Not low cost but different sector. Learned more about how the govt allocated 200 acres of land, about 3 miles from us and the army had put up a few shacks for those made homeless from the floods. No jobs meant few people stayed. She continues to speak well for us and will try to arrange additional key meetings for us.

Then to Henry McCauley, minister for energy. How to power our site is a challenge. It was clear though that the demand our village would attract would not be sufficient to make it worth the govt bringing power near the site. Very encouraging Minister and we learned about some of their solar plans and their conference in March. To power our village by solar would require 3 acres of land, so with all the house roofs this will be the direction of travel.

We talked through a number of issues today, they are so diverse as we look to see a community develop. Questions over leadership, naming, who is being employed and how it relates to local communities, people visiting SL to help and support, funding, ministry help. Step by step we get closer to the goal of transformed lives in the first of many communities.

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