Navigating recovery from the August weather event

27/01/2023 1:09pm
Navigator coordinator Katie Sellars (left) and Navigator Anna Gully, in the drop-in hub space open Monday-Friday 9.30am-5pm
Navigator coordinator Katie Sellars (left) and Navigator Anna Gully, in the drop-in hub space open Monday-Friday 9.30am-5pm

Nearly six months on from the intense rain event that left thousands of people displaced, a group of friendly faces continue to help residents whose homes and businesses are affected.

Nelson City Council provides a free and confidential service for people who are navigating their way through often complex claims involving multiple parties, such as Toka Tū Ake EQC, private insurers and geotechnical engineers.  

The team of Navigators provide one-on-one support and assistance, over the phone, online, and in-person from their drop-in hub in the State Advances building where people can drop in anytime, no appointment needed. 

“It can make all the difference to have a familiar face to help when you find yourself in a difficult situation and having a regular, single source of contact is also vital,” says Katie Sellars, Nelson City Council Navigator Coordinator.  

Many homeowners have been receiving geotechnical reports from EQC and pay-out offer letters from insurers and struggling with the complexity of the content. The Navigator team along with Leanne Curtis from the Resident Advisory Service (RAS) have responded to 24 separate requests for on-site meetings with residents over the last two weeks.  

One resident was confused about the letter they received from EQC alongside their geotechnical  report as it stated their land claim had been denied.  

“We were able to visit them in their home with Leanne from RAS and an agent from the insurance company who explained the difference between an EQC claim for land damage and building damage,” says Sellars.  

The Navigators can help anyone affected by the August weather event to access advice on things like insurance, temporary accommodation, debris removal and consents, as well as health and wellbeing – not just those with red and yellow placarded properties. 

“It helps so much that the people we are helping do not have to go through the call centre and speak to a different person every time – they can just pick up the phone or pop over to our drop-in hub and speak to the person that has been helping them. Our team can also do home visits for those unable to come to the hub.”   

“People are welcome to drop into the Navigator Hub to talk about anything they may have concerns or questions about.”  

“Our team doesn’t have all the answers, but we can help people to cut through the red tape and make it easier to connect with the correct person from either Council or other agencies.”  

To access the Navigator service:  

Drop-in Hub: open Monday-Friday 9.30am-5pm, State Advances building, Trafalgar Street (directly beside the Nelson City Council building). Access is via the laneway that runs between Trafalgar Street and Wakatu Square carpark.  


Phone: 03 546 0200