“I grew up in North Canterbury and Waipara. When I was around 10 we moved into the city. I left a community where I felt I belonged, I knew people and they knew me. I moved into this wild city of Christchurch which was quite shocking to me. It seems quite funny now, because I really love Christchurch!

A sense of belonging was really important. I started thinking about that and how I could recreate that, so 30 years ago I had the idea of community living. I bought these properties in 2007 to create a community – what we now call a co-housing village. I did have quite a lot of adversity in the beginning of this, but I feel blessed with that experience actually because I became financially savvy and I think that I’m in a perfect position now to do a co-housing development. I’m very grateful for the learnings that I’ve had along the way.

I love it that this property is on the edge of the four avenues, we’re close enough to be able to walk into the city.

I’ve been running my accommodation business here for 14 years. I specialize in internationals. For a long time I said I was building a global family because I’ve become very good friends with the people who live here. I must have had thousands of people through here from overseas. I love the diversity of culture.

I’m also Chair of the Housing for Women Trust. We own land out at South Brighton, the beachcomber site being rebuilt as a co-housing village for women and children. We’re committed to providing a way for women to own their own home and also offer affordable or accessible rental for women and their children.

What I’m really passionate about is connection – human connection – and quality relationships. That people experience happy and fulfilled lives, or settled lives, that’s important to me.”

– Jane

Charity registration number: CC57701