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Housing First Auckland Project Lead and joint Chief Executive, Wise Group

Julie Nelson


Julie is the joint chief executive of the Wise Group of entities, one of the largest non-government providers of mental health and wellbeing services in New Zealand. Julie has co-led the Group for more than 25 years, over which time it has grown from one to more than 1,000 employees.

Julie has also been instrumental in championing the adoption of the Housing First model in New Zealand and has worked on the frontline with chronically homeless people. She leads The People’s Project in Hamilton, which was established by the Wise Group to end chronic homelessness in Hamilton by 2016. The People’s Project is the first large-scale, researched pilot of Housing First in New Zealand.

Julie’s knowledge of community housing is in-depth. She has spent time in other countries reviewing various community housing models and was the co-chair of the Council of Community Housing Aotearoa.

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