Karakia marks start of new mental health and addictions facility

A karakia was held at Gisborne Hospital last week to mark the start of works on the new Te Whare Awhiora mental health and addictions facility.

Earthworks will get underway this week on new car parking before contractors move onto clearing the site for the foundations of the new facility.

Construction of the main building is expected to begin in March next year and the facility completed by March 2024.

Sonya Smith, Te Whatu Ora Tairāwhiti group manager for Te Ara Maioha mental health and addictions services, said the facility can’t come soon enough for the people of Tairāwhiti.

“Throughout the consultation and design phase, we’ve had so much heartfelt kōrero about the difference a facility like this will make for whānau,” said Ms Smith.

“We wish to thank mana whenua and everyone involved in the design process, especially Mode Design and Architects 44.

“We’re looking forward to this being facility designed by our people, for our people to heal for generations to come.”

Hawke’s Bay Construction will lead the build in partnership with a number of local Tairāwhiti subcontractors.

The $23.3m facility will be a welcoming whare, with 10 beds, whānau spaces, flexible therapy rooms, and a specially designed outdoor courtyard to embed connection with nature within the building.

The facility embraces a biophilic design that connects visitors and staff to the natural environment.

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