In the wake of Tropical Cyclone Gita in 2018, TROW Group stepped in to support communities in some of the devastated areas of the Kingdom of Tonga.
As part of a contract with Auckland Council, TROW Group had been commissioned to clear out old, unused buildings, and salvage materials and furniture from sites to be redistributed to the community, schools and churches.
Immediately after the Cyclone, TROW also partnered with Nukunuku village and SFL Group to send some of the furniture and salvaged materials to Tonga, to support the Kingdom’s rebuild.
Cyclone Gita swept through the Pacific leaving a trail of damage and disruption. The Kingdom of Tonga bore the brunt of the damage but it also affected Samoa, Niue, Fiji, New Caledonia and New Zealand.
Tonga sustained significant damage to critical infrastructure. Some 40% of roofs were lost and many villages needed to rebuild homes, schools and churches. TROW Group assisted with the recovery process by sending recycled materials and furniture to Queen Salote College to help rebuild and refurbish classrooms.
For the last two years, TROW Group has continued to send containers filled with materials and furniture to Tonga to repurpose and recycle. TROW has also established a permanent warehouse in Nukunuku which covers three hectares of land. The warehouse is filled with recycled materials to support the rebuild. If TROW hadn’t intervened, many of these materials would have been sent to landfills in New Zealand.
There were many challenges to this project including managing the newly-established company in Tonga, and understanding and complying with the Kingdom’s employment and tax laws.