My View of Canterbury - BioRegional Mapping

My View of Canterbury - BioRegional Mapping


Ōtautahi - Christchurch, 

Te Waipounamu - South Island

Ōtautahi was originally the name of a specific site in central Christchurch, a kāika situated on present-day Kilmore Street near the fire station.

It means the place of Tautahi and was adopted as the general name for Christchurch in the 1930s. Prior to this, Ngāi Tahu generally referred to the Christchurch area as Karaitiana.

Te Potiki Tautahi was one of the original Ngāi Tahu people to settle in the Canterbury region. His settlement was at Koukourarata (Port Levy) on Horomaka (Banks Peninsula). At that time, the swampy flatlands of the present-day site of Christchurch city were abundant with food such as ducks, weka, eels and small fish.

Tautahi and his people made frequent forays from Koukourarata around the Peninsula and then up the Ōtākaro (Avon River) to gather kai. They camped on the river banks as they caught eels and snared birds in the harakeke. Tautahi died during one of these visits and is buried in the urupā on the site of what was St Luke’s Church vicarage on the corner of Kilmore and Manchester Streets (demolished following the 2010 and 2011 earthquakes).

The area now defined as Christchurch city was named as Tautahi’s special territory. The full name is Te Whenua o Te Potiki-Tautahi, this was later shortened to Ō Te Potiki Tautahi and then shortened further to the name we have today, Ōtautahi.

Ōtākaro meanders its way from a spring source in Avonhead through the city and out to sea via the estuary. It was highly regarded as a mahinga kai by Waitaha, Ngāti Māmoe, and Ngāi Tahu. 

Ōtākaro, meaning the place of a game, is so named after the children who played on the river’s banks as the food gathering work was being done.

In Tautahi’s time, few Māori would have lived in the Ōtākaro area itself. Those that did were known to Māori living outside the region as Ō Roto Repo (swamp dwellers). Most people were seasonal visitors to Ōtākaro. Fish and birds were preserved for use over the winter months when fresh kai was in short supply.


Captain James Cook sighted Banks Peninsula on 16 February 1770. He wrongly supposed it to be an island and did not land. It was not until late 1809 that the first European entered Lyttelton Harbour in the sealer "Pegasus". Captain Chase gave the name of his vessel to Pegasus Bay. About 1815 the first European landed in Canterbury from another sealing ship, the "Governor Bligh". In 1827 Captain William Wiseman, a flax trader.

This information was obtained from Christchurch Libraries website.



Greater Christchurch is a defined geographical area surrounding Christchurch, New Zealand’s second-largest city and the largest settlement in the South Island. Greater Christchurch contains a population of 428,000 residents as of 2013. Just under 80% of the Canterbury regional population and 40% of the South Island population.  And based on a medium growth projection is expected to rise to increase to 566,900 people in 2043. (Obtain from Resilient Greater Christchurch PDF)




The earthquakes in Christchurch 2010 & 2011 changed everything here for the people of this city. A magnitude 6.3 on 22 February 2011, 185 people lost their lives and more than 7,000 were injured. I was not here at that time, I had flown the week before to Australia for the year. I return in March 2012 and was overwhelmed at the reality of what the residents of the city had to deal with. I had missed the rawness of the exposed interior of the buildings on display with the rumble of the walls dumped on the streets in front, of the massive amount of human effort to help those that had been traped, the eviction of many from their homes and the right for them to attain any personal belongs. I missed the cleanup of the streets from liquid fraction, the ques for drinking water and the toilet facilities and the community efforts to support each other through the devastation and uncertainty. My words about this are a small reflection of what I heard from people when I returned and can never capture what they went through. I was also lucky to have a home outside the city, at the end of the day, a place that had not reminders of the tragedy that had happened.


Big chunks of land clasped. Huge sections of the land missing building. Plots full of rumble. Fences stopping access to many parts of the city. It looked and felt like a war has passed through had bombed everywhere. 

Liquefaction from the 2nd earthquake was significantly greater than that of the 2010 quake, causing the upwelling of more than 200,000 tonnes of silt which needed to be cleared. The increased liquefaction caused significant ground movement, undermining many foundations and destroying infrastructure, damage which "may be the greatest ever recorded anywhere in a modern city". 80% of the water and sewerage system was severely damaged.


The Food Resilience Network project work I was involved in took me to Christchurch city a couple of days a week, for 4 years and I got to see the changing city, and in the first few years, it was a shocking process to watch, the destruction of the buildings without any thought to the waste. The machines that ate at the buildings like there were dragons, spewing water rather than fire and riping at the material hungrily. Nothing was salvaged at the beginning, there was a quick reaction to needing to clear up, many people couldn’t even return to their homes to save their personal belongings, and the piles grew rapidly.


There was a period that just seemed to change, the lull and heavy energy lifted like spring entering the city after a bad winter. The demolition of unsafe buildings had mostly been done and new buildings had started to pop up. 


In the years since the earthquakes, many groups have formed to create the growing and evolving initiatives that have stepped up to face the environmental, social, and economic issues present within the community.

I am listing here a big chunk of our network that has been doing great movements in our city pre & post-earthquake, though mostly it is the latter as a lot have formed in the response to these events.

I have sourced picture and information from there website and on-line profile to showcase the work that they are doing for our community, environment, and local economy.

Rangiora Earthquake Express 

Stepped in with deliveries of food and emergency supplies less than 48 hours after the February 22 ‘quake. The aim was to fill an urgent need at the time when the eastern suburbs were isolated from the main emergency services and people were marooned in their homes and shelters. 

  • Delivered 45 tonnes of hot food and emergency supplies in 150 helicopter flights directly to the streets of the Eastern suburbs over the first four days.

  • Over six days delivered more than 200 tonnes of food and essential items in countless road trains comprising volunteers in 4WD cars and vehicles towing trailers.

  • Facilitated the delivery of more than 20 tonnes of food and essential items from the North Island and northern parts of the South Island.

As well as this, there are still more than 11 trucks, and two shipping containers, facilitated by the REE, that are still in transit to the distribution centre for the eastern suburbs.

Over the six days of its operation, the REE was manned by around 1,000 volunteers, who came from as far afield as Auckland City & had money donated from all around the world to aid these efforts.


In the spirit of ideas worth spreading, TED has created a program called TEDx ... It is a program of local, self-organised events that bring people together to share a TED-like experience … TEDxChristchurch is a feast for the mind, body, and soul. Bringing together curious, open, passionate people to be intrigued, inspired, provoked and uplifted. 

This year was the 10th anniversary of the event. Tūrangawaewae — A place of belonging. A really power event that gave a huge purpose to belonging and standing up for those beliefs. I have chosen 3 speakers, out of an amazing bunch of people doing great work in the world, that really resonated with me (& permaculture).

Mananui Ramsden's kaitohutohu tikanga whenua - cultural land management advisor for ECan who educates the people who own and work on the 350 farms in the Selwyn Waihora water zone, about  indigenous conservation practices— mahinga kai values— such as the protection of water quality and Māori archaeological sites.

Veronica Steveson founder of Humble Bee’s whose mission is to replace existing, toxic and unsustainable plastics with superior, Biomimicry - biologically-inspired materials to improve human health and that of the environment.  to take plastics pollution out of the realm of individual responsibility and replace the materials that are used by industry when creating consumer products.

Dr Marilyn Waring New Zealand economist and feminist, whotalked about the importance of women's unpaid work and the environment, revealing the serious policy consequences caused by ignoring these when calculating national economic measures such as gross domestic product (GDP).


Project Lyttelton 

Is a non-profit grassroots organisation committed to building a sustainable and connected community. They aim to "be the change we wish to see in the world."

PL has been active for over 15 years strengthening the community’s resilience and culture. This was a very vital role when earthquakes hit over 6 years ago.

Margaret Jefferies describes Project Lyttelton as a group with a vision that uses strategy well. With a strong focus on co-creation, much of what Project Lyttelton does is the sum of the energy and dreams of the people involved, which she believes creates a special kind of energy. Some of the Projects:

 WasteMatters 02 06summerfest18squareLyttelton Recreation Centre What could be lyttelton farmersmarket logolyttelton garagesale logoFOL facebook logo 

Lyttelton Recreation Centre Activation Team has progressed with the restoring the Centre's place as a community hub to create an increasing social connectedness and wellbeing.

Summer Festival: Outdoor film screenings with live entertainment, food and suitcase markets, a day of cooking workshops and our annual Community Grown Dinner.

Festival of Lights: is our midwinter Matariki party on our main street with fireworks, hot food, music and much more. 

Lyttelton Farmers Market: Every Saturday from 10 am till 1 pm. Fresh produce, organics, meat, fish, eggs, honey, flowers, plants, preserves and baked goods. Also, music and a community stall for groups who want to raise awareness or promote a charity. 

The Garage Sale: Local op-shop, which both upholds the principle of re-using goods and provides clothing, books, kitchen goods and all manner of other things for great low prices. Open four days a week.

Waste Matters Project: Works primarily at the Lyttelton Farmers Market, with the goal of reducing waste to landfill through various initiatives. Serious - and playful - about managing and minimising waste in Lyttelton 

Community Garden: A gathering place to share ideas, to help improve community well-being and a place of beauty. It offers the opportunity for people to learn to grow food and minimise waste and a place to share in the bounty of the nutritious spray-free food from the garden. 

LIFT Library: Offers members over five hundred books on the transition movement, alternative currencies, sustainability and community development, economics, food, health, and relevant DVDs and magazines. Film Screening

Banks Peninsula Walking Festival: Guided walks all over the peninsula during the month of November. The guides, all volunteers, bring a huge wealth of knowledge and experience which makes each walk a valuable experience beyond access to tracks, reserves and private land.

TimeBank: Trade skills with other community members, get involved with other projects and events all promoted through a weekly bulletin email.  

The 21 Day Challenge: Local heroes are taking on a challenge in the area of waste, environment, wellbeing and food (for example to minimise plastic use or eat only locally grown food). 

Library of Tools and Things: Members borrow tools and things and pay an annual subscription, sharing and supporting the community, reducing waste and consumerism…. 

The Repair Café: Envisaged as an event run in conjunction with the Lyttelton Library of Tools and Things, a project that is currently in development. There have been 2 cafés to date.

lyttelton harbour timebank logoLLOTT logo square21 DC squarelyttelton liftlibrary logowalking festival logo

Ministry of Awesome

Was founded as a way to make things happen in post-earthquake Christchurch. At a time when no one was looking, when people had ideas and room to play, we gathered together to activate our networks, break down barriers, cut through the red tape, and enable people to envision our inspiring future city. 

Ministry of Awesome is the starting point for entrepreneurs, startups, and innovators in Christchurch. We deliver the support, guidance, capability training, and networks entrepreneurs need to succeed. Entrepreneurs and innovators are key to Christchurch's successful future as the city of opportunity. And, for these change-makers, there is no better place to be than Christchurch, a city whose ambition is to lead in its approach to sustainability, innovation, and a collaborative economy.


Gap Filler

Is a globally acclaimed creative social enterprise that makes places more memorable, fun, participatory, surprising, equitable and sociable. We work with communities – and the public and private sectors – to design and deliver experimental civic installations and placemaking and development strategies that are the foundation for strong community outcomes.

Gap Filler offers a wide range of placemaking services including engagement, strategy, design and construction/implementation. And has led the delivery of more than 100 public installations with partners from all fields and sectors, and facilitated countless others to lead their own projects through workshops, strategy design, program design, support services and more. Here’s a small selection of some of our favourites.

Life in Vacant Spaces

Started on July 1, 2012. LiVS provides a comprehensive brokerage service for project partners and landowners. We are dedicated to inspiring Christchurch to activate our many vacant sites and spaces with creative, intriguing and entrepreneurial temporary projects. We work with landowners and project partners to bring life back to our vacant spaces. Below are a couple of projects, the full list can be provided on their website.

RAD (Recycle a Dunger) bikes is a community bike workshop brought to you by the team at Gap Filler. A not-for-profit community bike shed in central Christchurch. It is a workshop space where anyone can build or repair a bicycle for themselves and/or help restore bikes to give away. We provide bikes, tools, parts and technical guidance within a workshop where all are welcome to share their time, skills and ideas.

Agropoliswas a daring, scalable transitional urban farm right in the middle of Christchurch’s inner city.  It involved composting organic waste from inner-city hospitality businesses as well as the ground preparation, sowing and planting, harvesting, cooking and distribution of the produce.

Cultivate Christchurch is building a network of productive urban farms in Christchurch, propagated and powered by the next generation. Their goal is to link local schools, youth programs, and other social engagement programs into the construction and production of their urban farms. Cultivate is creating a future of vitality and abundance through healthy soil, healthy food, and ultimately healthy people and communities.

Greening the Rubble 

Creates public green spaces and places where communities can gather.  We are a charitable trust that grew after the Canterbury earthquakes to contribute to the rejuvenation of our city. Our focus is to work with communities, co-creating spaces that support strong connections and wellbeing.

Herb Dispensary Garden & Sound Garden

Phillipstown Hub gathering place “Kotahitanga” officially opened


Is a digitally-manufactured building system. It aims to make it simple for anyone to design, manufacture and assemble beautiful, high-performance homes that are customised to their needs. 

Food Resilience Network

Vision: A patchwork of food growing at local hotspots, linked together like a ribbon and woven into the fabric of our communities. Food resilience is about people…it is about how we connect with each other and how we relate to our role within the ecosystem. It invites us to care and be guardians. 

The Food Resilience Network was formally launched in 2014 at the Food Resilience Expo in the Botanic Gardens, and in early 2015 the Edible Canterbury Charter was signed by numerous organisations (first off was the Christchurch City Council). This Charter sets out the guiding principles of our collective efforts to create a more food resilient region. It is also a tool that could be used to establish accountability.

Ōtākaro Orchard is a project of the Food Resilience Network to build an urban learning hub for local food in the heart of Christchurch. Conceived in 2015 with the input of over 200 people, this project won the tender from CERA for the North Frame Community Garden. As the only community-led anchor project of the rebuild, Ōtākaro Orchard is a rare example of grassroots community vision backed by local & national government and the private sector. This project is a critical anchor for our thriving local food movement, a central nexus for intergenerational learning, and a world-class exemplar of what’s possible for New Zealand and other cities around the globe.

A Brave New City

Christchurch social entrepreneur Michael Reynolds was living in the CBD at the time of the Christchurch earthquakes in 2010 and lost his job in the aftermath. 

He took on a crowdfunding  PledgeMe campaign money to revitalise Christchurch as a creative city after an idea at the end of 2013 which mostly came from a place of frustration at the lack of foresight being shown by the leaders in the redevelopment process. A Brave New City aim was to putt the human experience and well being at the centre of building a new city and Michael made this a very visual community interactive approach. He gave people a voice and a place of focus. Read more here

Riomata Food Commons

Michal has gone on to create this space in Radley park a 3-acre stretch of land, bordered by 2 adjoining rivers in Woolston. Pictured below,  before the occupation of the local community stewardship in August 2017. 

The vision was to create a multi-faceted community food hub with fruit and berry orchards and large beds to grow vegetables and herbs. The produce from the orchard and garden to then be harvested by the local community to feed those who put time into the garden and/or to support those in need in our hapori/community. 

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Aims to be a core influence on ecological restoration throughout the Avon River Red Zone, advocating for and making possible maximum retention and restoration of indigenous habitat. “We can create a red zone forest and wetland park, that benefits not just a few, but ALL of the city. Just as our forebears left us Hagley Park so our legacy can be Avon-Otakaro Forest Park.” 

Our city. Our legacy. Our forest park . . . Te takiwā, kā hua a Tāne, he taoka tuku iho.

The whole city will benefit from returning the Avon River red zone to nature. Greening the Red Zone members explain their vision and hopes for a forest and wetland park for Christchurch.

Avon-Otakaro Forest Park

A Forest Park Vision for the Christchurch Red Zone

“Our vision is to transform Christchurch’s Red Zone into a vibrant, city-to-sea native forest park along the Avon-Otakaro River. 


We believe this land should be returned to nature, creating a ribbon of green from the town centre to New Brighton. A forest park would provide a setting for sensitive recreation, a catalyst for regeneration and tourism, protection from flooding and pollution and enhance our city. It will also create an ecological paradise for native flora and fauna and a clean, green forest park to be enjoyed by all. We advocate for a simple, common-sense approach that works with nature to remediate this land for the good of the community and our natural environment. Our forest park proposal is low cost, low impact with huge benefits and returns both directly and indirectly.

Otakaro-Avon Network

Vision is to changing Christchurch's Avon River red zone from a place of trauma and heartache to a land of fun and natural beauty!

We seek to turn the Avon-Ōtākaro red zone into:

a multipurpose city-to-sea river park that meets diverse community needs eg for environmental regeneration and restoration; recognition of cultural & community heritage; play, recreation, and sport; food production; arts and entertainment; learning, training, employment, small business, and tourism.

And while allowing for multiple uses as above, the maximum possible restoration of native ecosystems, to enhance water quality, biodiversity and environmental resilience which in turn support mana whenua aspirations for restored mahinga kai values.

Living Portfolio Links:

Our Living Portfolio

About Project Proposals

Avonside Amphitheatre

Barkerton Park

Christchurch CablePark

Community Food Growing

Cycle & Walkway Network

Eden NZ

Family Swimming Lake

Flat Water Sports Options

Godwit Lodge

Heritage Garden Park

Lower Avon Heritage Trail

Natural Playgrounds

New Wetlands

Places of Tranquillity

Pleasant Point Yacht Club

Recreation Camps

Rhododendron Grove

Riverside Cafes

Surf Park (WHoW)

Waitakiri Sanctuary

Whitewater Park (WHoW)

Richmond Community Garden

Is situated in Avebury Park at the back section of  Avebury House, which was built as the Flesher family homestead in 1882, and has an English-style garden setting with expansive lawns and large deciduous trees. The grounds also includes a popular children's playground and a paddling pool. 

For a few years, this mixed community garden had been neglected, the Earthquake in 2011 meant that the local community halved and volunteers moved away or no longer had any interest in maintaining it.

In February 2015 several volunteers reinstated the garden from scratch clearing the site, creating garden beds, a composting area and building a garden shed to store tools, equipment, and seeds which had been kindly donated. We believe with a well-established community garden it will help those in need in our community, it will bring a community on the edge of the red zone new life and give an interest to those who wish to help.

The Richmond Community Garden group supports the local community by teaching self-sufficiency through growing veggies while having fun and creating friendships within the community. We meet every Wednesday and Saturday and host a number of free workshops throughout the year - How to make … Compost; Seed Bombs; Marmalade; Riverbed Refuge; Earth Building; Hazel Weaving. We enjoy hosting local kindergartens to educate young children the joys of growing their own vegetables and over time we are looking to run workshops to teach people who want to learn more about gardening. Plus, host multiple community events to keep all ages involved with this beautiful space.

We welcome new volunteers to help create a beautiful veggie garden and support the local Community by teaching self-sufficiency through growing veggies while having fun and creating friendships within the community. 

This year the community project was visited by Jane Goodall, who was inspired by the community efforts to restore the local community gardens and natural ecosystem of the area that she made a special trip to visit them. 

They are currently working on a 20ft container cafe to come on site, the foundations and decking are in place, along with multiple sitting areas, next to the old road on the river bank. 

Peterborough Community

Situated in inner-city, Peterborough Co-op is seven households in a row with joined-up back yards. The households contain three families, two-flats, one single, and one couple, giving fifteen adults and six children. It started in 1982. It was originally home to multiple workers cottages; simple small-scale homes with small plots of land. Fences were removed. The houses were renovated so their entrance, living room, and kitchens open onto their backyard, generally separated from their neighbours by shrubs. The backyards butt onto a large common backyard and common sheds.

Peterborough Housing Cooperative is being rebuilt now, after being extensively damaged in the 2012 earthquake. It will be finished in February 2020.

The Peterborough Housing Co-Operative Development is a prime example of a medium density development but with a unique twist. This development draws from the density of the site's origins but distributes the buildings in a different way. The new pocket neighbourhood has 15 dwellings cluster around a large common courtyard. Plus a common house/education centre, and an adjoining section for parking.

A housing co-operative is relatively unique in Christchurch; however, they are becoming increasingly popular throughout the world. And now with the vacant spaces around the city, there is more opportunity to create more here.

Madras Street Co-housing

The Madras Square neighborhood development will become a new way of delivering sustainable urban communities. By approaching the entire site as a ‘system for affordable living’, the development will address land tenures, home typologies, local food, sustainable transport, and collaborative commerce to reduce purchase prices, improve resident well-being and reduce housing stress. The development models being incorporated into Madras Square not only borrow from nearly 50 years of learning from co-housing, cooperatives and other intentional developments around the world but also embed the cultural stories, values, and aspirations of local Maori. Where conventional development tries to maximise profit and keep costs as low as possible, the Ōtautahi Urban Guild aims to deliver homes at cost and improve the overall quality of housing and community.

New Brighton Ecovillage

The New Brighton Sustainable Coastal Village Project is a grassroots organisation working to establish a co-housing neighbourhood in New Brighton. It puts people at the heart of the project. By using the 12 Principles of Permaculture as fundamental design principles, resilience is a natural outcome. 

Ti Kouka Eco Lane

Is a distinctive residential development, created for those who want premium quality living in harmony with nature.  Fostering permaculture i.e. an ecologically sustainable environment, including healthy and efficient buildings through the use of natural, safe and sustainable materials incorporating solar design for space and water heating.

Canterbury Tiny Home Society

We are a group of Cantabrians with a common interest in tiny houses and the tiny house movement. While the Facebook group has been around for many years, this official not-for-profit society was established in 2017. We hold public events in the form of social picnics, workshops, and presentations, to meet our general aims.

We’re working with Regen Chch and CCC to propose a small village of tiny houses.

This would allow us to showcase a sustainable urban community while utilising land not fit for traditional builds. Our proposal aims to

  • Nurture the land and provide security to the neighbouring communities

  • Provide a social hub for events and community driven initiatives

  • Engage with the council to provide a better understanding of Tiny Houses

  • Create a framework to help with future Tiny House villages

October 19th we are lucky to have NZ Tiny House & Alternative Living Conference in Christchurch, with 10 speakers, exhibits and Q & A sessions for people to attend.

Piko Wholefoods

This year they turn 40! They began trading in March 1979 in a small shop at 225 Kilmore Street. In February 1981 Piko moved to 229 Kilmore Street. Their shop dated 1905, didn’t make it through the earthquakes, and for a number of years, while waiting for the EQC payout, they traded on Stanmore road. Piko reopened on Nov 2015 and has made a big effort with its sustainability design. The building generates most of the electricity it needed from an army of solar panels on the roof, and  It won a Timber Design Award in 2017.

The shop aims to place people before profit. One of the reasons for starting Piko was to provide an outlet for organically grown produce -vegetables, grains, beans, dried fruits, nuts, herbs, and spices. Piko Wholefoods and Crafts Co-operative, as it was known in the beginning, has always taken a political stand. Not party political but political for social change. Piko was committed to bulk purchases and simple, self-packaging to keep prices down.  

As a low-profit charitable trust, a chunk of our profits is dished out to various groups within our wide community! Otakaro Orchard; Cultivate Christchurch; Laura's Dairy; ICE Cycles; Christchurch Women's Centre; Greening the Rubble; University of Canterbury Sustainability Awards; Westpac Rescue Helicopter Appeal; Ao Tawhiti Unlimited Discovery School (Pastoral Care Group); Also many fundraisers and community groups.

They also started a franchise in 2012 Lyttel Piko, based in Lyttelton, which after 5 years turned into the Harbour Co-op, which is now 7 years old.

Harbour Co-op

Are a community-owned multi-stakeholder co-operative: Household (consumer), Supporting (investment), Employee (worker), and Institutional purchaser (large consumer),  all working together to support local, organic, fair trade and wholefoods producers and makers of products available to the Lyttelton Harbour, and greater New Zealand to improving the health of our land and our people. 

The efforts of the team to create open sourced documents to help legislation of small cooperative allow for Nelson to open up an organic cooperative for their community. One of the big things the Harbour Co-op had to deal with was being audited every year which cost $7000 the same fee that Fonterra had to pay annually. This now through prolonged efforts to make changes, is not the case so cooperatives earning under 2 million dollars a year. Something our 217 households shareholders were over the moon about.

Liminal Apparel& The Addington Coffee Company

Addington Coffee Co-op is part of a larger organisation called Liminal, formed around strong values of fair and ethical ways of doing business in 2008. Our apparel and bags are made under fair trade working conditions, and we only use sustainable or organic materials. We’re serious about bettering the lives of our producers, so we also reinvest all profits back to the communities that create our products. In the corners of the cafe, you'll find the Addington Store selling ethical, fair trade and organic products; and the industrious Jailerbreaker Roastery, Quality, sustainability, and ethical trading are core values for us, so we partner with longstanding fair trade coffee pioneer Trade Aid in sourcing our Fairtrade Organic beans. 

The Addington Farm

Is a not-for-profit social enterprise based in a city suburb on o 2 adjacent properties joined together in Jan 2018 to create a city produce farm.  We are all about three things: produce, place, and people. 

Laura’s Dairy

Is a small-scale organic farm that produces fresh, raw milk. The farm is located at Orton Bradley Park in Lyttelton Harbour.  She is an ethical farm who care for her cows as part of the family, the environment through organically and biodynamic practices, and her community.  

Education at Laura’s Dairy is a hands-on learning opportunity for students to get a real-life authentic experience of an organic dairy farm, based on the NZ Curriculum.

This farm is part of a local CSA group only possible because of the community of support it has … There are a significant number of individuals who contribute to the farm from those who offer legal and professional advice, through to practical help with tractors and pumps, consulting on pasture and cow health.

Hinewai Reserve

Is an ecological restoration project on Banks Peninsula, privately owned by the Maurice White Native Forest Trust and managed by botanist Hugh Wilson. It occupies 1250 hectares in the south-eastern corner of Banks Peninsula on the South Island’s east coast. in 1987, Hugh let the local community know of his plans to allow the introduced ‘weed’ gorse to grow as a nurse canopy to regenerate farmland into native forest. Today the land is now 1500 hectares. A recent documentary by Happen Film tells of his vision and journey to-date.


The Biological Husbandry Unit Organics Trust

History: The Biological Husbandry Unit (BHU) was established in 1976 by Bob Crowder, an academic working at Lincoln University (LU).  After Bob's retirement at the end of the 1990s the BHU was re-launched in 2001 as a charitable trust as a joint venture between Lincoln University and the New Zealand Organic Movement.

The BHU farm and research activities were initially managed by Dr. Tim Jenkins as part of a duel academic position at LU. Funding from MAF Sustainable Farming Fund and AgMardt that enabled the position was largely research-based developing and promoting techniques for commercial-scale organic agriculture. As the position developed the extension aspect of this was able to be expanded with well-attended workshops aimed mostly at small farmers/growers and the development of a large published (web and print) resource of practical and technical information for commercial growers. Academic material was also developed for formal LU courses. The BHUemployed and hosted summer students and overseas interns as well as working with LU and visiting researchers. Tim moved onto commercial research, extension and product development in August 2004 but has continued to write regularly in several publications including regular columns in OrganicNZ magazine and Canterbury Farming Newspaper. He now co-directs the Centre for Sustainable Agricultural Technologies Ltd and is a research associate with the BHU.

Hikuika Farm

Welcome to Hikuika Permaculture HazelnutFarm! We pride ourselves in growing sustainably top-quality hazelnuts using permaculture and organic principles. Our seven-hectare permaculture farm began in 1996 is located in beautiful Puaha Valley on Banks Peninsula.



Motivated by the converging problems of environmental degradation, overpopulation, peak oil, and climate change, we employ permaculture principles and philosophies to develop resilient living systems with a focus on biological environmental restoration, food production and living in balance with nature.

The Food Farm

Is a 16-acre organic small farm in the Waipara Valley, North Canterbury New Zealand. Our property has been designed using permaculture principles and we produce most of our own food. We run seasonal workshops teaching people the skills to grow their own food. They suit all levels of knowledge; from those just starting out who want to feed their families, to those with more skills looking to expand their food-growing capabilities into a possible business.


Sustainable Bays

To nurture and support community development within the Sumner and Redcliffs areas.

Our Daily Waste 

Is a recycling and waste prevention consultancy, specialising in customised recycling signage, event management, and waste education.

By starting with the things we can do now, Our Daily Waste offers innovative practical solutions to any organisation in New Zealand wanting to seriously reduce their waste and its impact on our land and C02 emissions.

Our Daily Waste takes environmental and social responsibility seriously and has been set up as a Social Enterprise so that a share of the profits can be invested in the wider community.

Lincoln Envirotown Trust

Taking Responsibility for a Sustainable Future ... Our vision is for long-term environmental, social, economic and cultural sustainability in Selwyn District. To educate, support, research and promote sustainability, by working with the community, for the community and in partnership with other organisations.

Christchurch Enviro Hub

The VISION and PURPOSE: We want to encourage environmental well-being in the Greater Christchurch area - From global to local issues. From Waimakariri to the Selwyn, Alps to Banks Peninsula.

We envisage the Christchurch Enviro Hub to be a welcoming hub to connect, support, educate, and inspire - upholding kaitiakitanga and manaakitanga

Christchurch City Sustainable Living Info

Has been compiled by future living skills and the local council body that is in partnership with the program. On the page link above are more links to pages representing sustainability in our city.


There are bound to be more ventures happening in our city that we have not featured, there is just so much to feature here. All of this is a clear indication that we have a rich community of activities that support the growth of our region in a highly positive direction.