Working in partnership with Lotofale’ia Tongan Methodist Church of Mangere

Lotofale’ia Tongan Methodist Church of Mangere (TMCM) had a dream to address social issues facing their congregation that spans decades.

From inception in 1991 to the beginning of fundraising in 1994 Lotofale’ia TMCM acquired a parcel of land in Hall Avenue, Mangere which was given the name “Matanikolo”.

The name “Matanikolo” or “Gateway to the Lord” (Psalms 118:20) was given to the congregation of Lotofale’ia TMCM for the land by the then Prince Fatafehi Tu’ipelehake of the Kingdom of Tonga. It was his vision that “Matanikolo” become a source of life to the congregation and the Church as a whole.

Construction of the dwellings commenced in January 2013 and was completed by the end of December 2013. In total 22 houses were built compromising 14 three-bedroom, 3 four-bedroom and 5  five-bedroom houses.

In August 2013 a young Tongan family moved from overcrowded accommodation they shared with relatives into their brand-new home within the Matanikolo Housing Project. It was a double celebration as just weeks later they welcomed a new baby to their family.

Previously the family lived with the wife’s parents, grandparents, her brother and his wife and two children; totalling 12 people in a crowded house in Mangere.

Now, all twenty-two homes are occupied making this housing development, the first pacific housing project funded through the Government’s Social Housing Unit (Growth Fund), to be completed.

To take it from vision to reality, APT worked with:

  • The Government’s Social Housing Unit, Te Wāhanga Kāinga Pāpori (Growth Fund)
  • Lotofale’ia Mangere Tongan Methodist Parish
  • Methodist Church of New Zealand, Te Haahi Weteriana O Aotearoa.

While stage one of the Matanikolo Housing project is complete, it is set to become a true ‘village’ within Mangere. Stage two, made up of eight two-bedroom units for the elderly population, was completed in 2018. Stage 3 is planned for construction in 2023.