Four years after The Salvation Army disestablished Rotoroa Island's alcohol and drug rehabilitation services, the Rotoroa Island Trust was established in 2008. This Trust purchased a 99-year lease from The Salvation Army and the island has undergone a significant transformation before opening to the public in 2011. Over 20,000 pine trees have been felled to make room for 400,000 native plants-and that's just the beginning. Holiday homes restored so people can stay and experience the island overnight and the trust undertook a major programme to make the island predator free.
The next phase was a 5-year partnership with Auckland Zoo which helped develop the wildlife sanctuary that Rotoroa is today, a safe place for endangered species in need of care. Through this relationship, a number of endangered animals were released on the island, including takahē, tīeke (saddleback), kiwi, skinks and pateke (brown teal).
Rotoroa Island was the first major project created with generous gifts from Neal and Annette Plowman who went on to establish the NEXT Foundation, which makes significant investments in education and environment initiatives. Thanks to the vision of the Plowmans, Rotoroa Island is now an idyllic wildlife sanctuary sitting just off the coast of Auckland city and open for everyone to enjoy.
Many businesses and individuals have helped in the restoration of Rotoroa Island. We'd like to say thanks to the following companies and people:
Charitable Trusts and Organisations
The Salvation Army
The Hutton Wilson Trust
Volunteer Groups, including...
Pernod Ricard New Zealand
Community Partners and Associations
Department of Conservation (DoC)
Forest and Bird
Hauraki Gulf Marine Forum
Thames Coast Kiwi Care
Suppliers and Contractors
360 Discovery Cruises
The Letter Q
Rick Pearson and Associates
The Business Advisory Group
A special thank you to the following photographers and organisations for giving us access to their images to help us share Rotoroa Island's story:
Nick Eagles, Richard Gibson, James Gow, Kathrin Simon, Karen Talbot, Striped Tree Productions, Auckland Zoo, NZ Herald and The Salvation Army Archives
Directors of The Rotoroa Island Trust Company Limited (the Trustees) are Andrew Poole (Chairman), Ewen Anderson, David Bateman, Simon Plowman and Andrew Westrupp. Andrew Westrupp and David Bateman represent the Salvation Army. Rotoroa Island Trust's Charities Commission Registration Number is CC24437.