We are locals who believe we can do something. We want to introduce you to our trustees and some of our working group - our trustees are our final decision makers representing the community, whilst the working group have been developing and implementing the housing trust's work. This is a collective effort and many others have also been lending their time, professional skills and support. These people are all keen to discuss with you Housing Trust matters. Contact them personally or through


Keith Johnston believes that great things grow from Paekakariki.  He and his wife Trish Sarr moved to live here in 1997.  He had spent many years as an environmental activist and journalist before becoming a leader at the Department of Conservation and then, in the past decade, a consultant and author on leadership.  Five years ago he started a company with partners based in Paekakariki. Now it is a global network of leadership consultants.  Keith has also been involved with the aid and development agency Oxfam.  He was the founding chair of Oxfam New Zealand in the 1990s; in the past decade he spent six years as chair of Oxfam International. 

Tena koutou katoa, My Name is Levi Jean Waitarere Farrell. I am 27 years old and was "born and raised" in Paekakariki by my parents Karl And Beryl Farrell alongside my four older sisters. I have two boys Cypress and Rohu. We are Ngati Haumia and very proud of our whenua. After primary school (Paekakariki School) I attended College (Kapiti) for five years. I was a member of the very first Kapiti Coast Youth Council as a iwi representitive which was truly an eye opening experience for us all. I am very humbled to be given the opportunity to be involved with the Paekakariki Housing Trust with 100% support from my Hapu. Naku Noa, Levi Farrell

Linda McLaughlan: Linda is a published novelist (Chasing Charlie) and writer with an extensive experience in film and television. She lives with her husband Sam and two children in Paekakariki, with a passion for community. She has worked at the school as administrator, and provided her skills to the housing trust and Paekakariki Online website initiative. Linda has produced numerous films in NZ and the UK.

Tina Pope (also on working group): Kia ora koutou. Until recently I was chair of the Board of Trustees for Paekākāriki School, having been on governing boards in the past for Tenants Protection Association and Community Law Centre in Christchurch. I’ve worked for Housing New Zealand and as a tenancy educator in the past, and currently put my law degree to good use doing legal and technical writing and editing. I’m passionate about building strong and connected community and Paekākāriki truly is my place. I lived here 20 years ago and returned with my husband Mike and kids Olive and Louis six years ago. I believe warm, dry and affordable housing for all is a basic human right and is necessary before any other social issues can be addressed. I believe housing is about homes and communities, not capital gains. I believe tenure protection is vital for everyone and particularly for children. I feel concerned that our school roll is dropping because families can’t afford to stay here. (Tina is also co-chair of the trust and a trustee)

Mark Galbraith (also on working group): I've lived in Paekākāriki for 17 years now with my partner Andrea and kids Finnian (16) and Maia (14). We have a small commercial air-conditioning company so I'd like to use my business skills to help make the Housing Trust a success. I'd like to develop the idea of social investing generally and make it accessible to supporters and people wanting to set up new projects. (Mark is also a trustee)

Holly Jane Ewens: musician, performer, teacher and current Paekākāriki Community Board member. I live in a blended family of 6 children and have been renting in this village I’ve been fortunate to call home for 20+ years. A home that has helped raise babies into young adults, a home that has provided a welcoming audience for gigs, fairs and festivals which I’ve been involved in. A home that proudly knows its heart lies in the word ‘community’ and fiercely defends it. The Paekākāriki Housing Trust is testament to that ethos.

Sophie Handford: I am a youngster from the village. I have been lucky enough to call Paekakariki my home from the very day I was born, growing up beside the sea. I have a very strong passion for supporting and helping others in any way, shape or form. Giving back brings me such joy. Paekakariki and its strong sense of community has fostered me as an individual and allowed me to grow into the person I am now. I am Head Girl at Kapiti College in 2018. Any chance I have to give back to this very community, I will take.

Halen Farrell: Tena Koutou katoa, I am acting as a trustee alongside my sister, Levi. I am here on behalf of Ngati Haumia, so the voice and aroha of

mana whenua can be shared. I have a lifelong relationship with Paekakariki, and want all of our rangatahi to go forward into the world knowing their roots and feeling confident.

Murray Julian: I learnt through my parents the importance of contributing to community tikanga, and that for any community to be successful it needs to invest in itself. Accordingly, I have had an ongoing commitment to contribute to the Paekakariki community since moving here permanently in 2001. I bring a unique combination of Governance, HR, and Operational leadership

experience of over 20 years to the trust. My commitment to this community to date has included, three years as a Playcentre session leader and Dad, seven years on the Paekakariki School Board of Trustees, and five Years as a Paekakariki Scout Leader, amongst other things I have been treasurer of the Raumati Swim Club where so many of our mokopuna have learnt to swim. I am currently the General Manager of People, Safety and Culture at  Centreport.

Working Group

Mark Amery (communications manager): I've lived in Paekākāriki for 20 years and with Hannah Zwartz and our three children, feel lucky to have been able to buy a house in Te Miti Street. My work is centred on finding new ways for people to collectively create public space, because  empowered communities create change. Recent local projects have included helping found Paekākāriki FM and now Paekākāriki Online, a web platform by the village for the village. I have worked in communications, as an arts writer, advisor and manager for many years, including many governance roles.I am co-manager of public art programme Letting Space, which explores the potential of art to work with community and create public space outside the gallery.

Taja Farslow

Mike Stringfellow: I'm from Otautahi. I've lived in Paekākāriki for six years with Tina, Olive and Louis. We live on Tilley Rd. I've been involved in government housing organisations most of my working life. I have come to believe that community housing organisations are better at providing affordable and managing housing than the government or private sector. I have been a member of Abbeyfield Porirua trying to establish housing for elderly. I want to contribute with my knowledge of housing models and products.

Kerren Hedlund: With Justin Corbett I have been working in humanitarian assistance, community mobilisation, advocacy, and fundraising internationally for the last 20 years. In February 2016, we moved to this amazing village. We had a choice to live anywhere and we chose Paekākāriki for the people, diversity, active community, and school. Now we've learned that these things are under threat by the housing crisis. So, we're fighters, practical, passionate and strategic. Why this fight? If this community won't fight to protect the very special thing that is all the layers of the onion of Paekākāriki , there are other interests out there that will step into that gap and strip them away.

Jennifer Martin

Helen Burch