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Sustaining Our Streams: Whau Project

Year Started: 
Contact Person: 
Mandy McMullin
E-mail address: 
Group Members: 
1 Olympic Place, New Lynn
Auckland 0640
New Zealand

What is SOS Whau Project?

‘Sustaining Our Streams’ (SOS Whau) is a community project which aims to restore the ecological balance along the Waitahurangi(Avondale) and Parahiku Streams which connect the Blockhouse Bay, Green Bay and New Lynn neighbourhoods; these streams are tributaries to the Whau river.

Through this project, SOS Whau aspires to develop partnerships with residents, community volunteers, and school students to remove environmental weeds and replant our local stream-banks with eco-sourced native plants, on private properties, in local schools and public reserves.

It’s our neighbourhood, so let’s work together and rebuild a healthy and thriving stream environment. along our connecting streams!

This exciting community project is funded by The Trusts Community Foundation and delivered by EcoMatters Environment Trust.

What we can offer

If you are a resident on our streamsides in the designated area of the catchment, our environmental tool-box is open and ready to work with you to help re-create a beautiful and healthy stream environment. All we ask is for your commitment to a small amount of regular time and effort spent weeding and planting the streambank in your area over a few years until plantings are established. It's a great way to get to know your neighbours too!

SOS Whau can provide:

  • Ecological advice
  • Free weed management plans and support for implementation
  • Free weed bags for composting weeds on-site - no expensive waste removal!
  • Free planting plan design and support for implementation.
  • Free eco-sourced NZ Native plants.


Why we care: Waitahurangi/Avondale Stream

The Waitahurangi/Avondale stream catchment covers areas of Avondale, Blockhouse Bay, Green Bay and New Lynn and is part of the greater Whau River Estuary catchment flowing into the Upper Waitemata harbour of Auckland. The Waitahurangi/Avondale Stream once played an important role in the movement of the local iwi of the region, serving as a canoe portage for the Te Kawerau a Maki tribe who would travel by canoe from the Hauraki Gulf and Waitemata Harbours, up the Whau and Waitahurangi and over to the Manukau Harbour.

Over time this once naturally beautiful stream and portage has become degraded by urban land use activities. The introduction of some invasive exotic plants has created an environmental pest plant problem.  Our urban lifestyles cause a great deal of stream pollution and the degradation of the natural stream environment, including erosion. Although we can’t turn back the clock, we can work together to improve the health and quality of our waterways to make beautiful living spaces for our communities, to restore the ecological balance for plants, animals and aquatic life, and to improve water quality in our rivers and oceans.






Portage Licensing Trust, EcoMatters Environment Trust
EcoMatters Environment Trust, Friends of the Whau, Auckland Council