Sheryl Moana Marie’s journey to a healthier home

Feb 28, 2023

Sheryl shares her story with us.

“When I moved into this home 26 years ago, there was cockroaches and rats everywhere. It was rundown and full of holes. I was a seasonal worker and didn’t have a steady income so I just did what I could to make it liveable.

My house has always been an open whānau home, which gradually filled up with family and friends that needed a safe place to live. I also had my baby niece as whāngai for the first ten months of her life, and it was while she was with me that the Plunket nurse came and saw how damp and cold the house was. She was shocked at the smell of mould and how we were living. The house was so damp we kept the curtains and windows open all year round to reduce condensation. We had been living like that for so long, we’d just gotten used to it.

Sheryl standing on her front porch

She referred me to Habitat, who came and did a house assessment. It turned out that the roof had been leaking for a long time, which caused damaged to the ceilings and made the whole house damp from the top down.

I applied to Habitat because as well as making the repairs I could pay them back over time, which made it affordable for me.

Habitat have been awesome! In addition to the roof repair, they patched up all the holes in my walls, added locks to my bathroom and fixed the ceilings.  I got curtains fitted throughout and new steps and handrails installed as well as having the base boards fixed around the house so my dogs can’t go underneath and destroy the insulation.

While I’m still renovating its already drier and warmer. I sleep a lot better, I’m so grateful I don’t have to worry about it every time it rains. Just knowing that my house is fixed. It’s huge.”

Click HERE to learn more about our Healthy Homes Programme