This week has reminded me that when things do not quite go to plan, you just make do and get on with it. A headache followed by a positive COVID-19 test also reminded me not to be complacent.

In a week of ups and downs, the words of former Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern have stuck with me. Her valedictory speech to Parliament on Wednesday afternoon was woven with that trademark openness and warmth that made her such a popular leader. Regardless of your political stripes, she left with some important messages for us all. One that stood out to me is that our work is never done.

Since Ardern’s departure from office at the end of January, there has been much commentary about her achievements, or in some camps, lack of. But as she so graciously reminded us in her poroporoaki, the key issues she championed will not be solved overnight.

Child poverty, reducing inequities, climate change – these are not issues that have a quick fix or should even be part of a political equation. These are issues that all of us must continue to place at the forefront and work together to solve. A change in leadership or a change in Government should not be a reason to take a step backwards.

Ms Ardern has left a long list of legacies and on Wednesday she reminded us that any one of us can be a leader. I agree, and that is because I see it every day within our Whānau Ora partners and entities, who are doing just that, leading within their communities, and creating legacies. Change does not just happen in the House of Representatives or due to the efforts of those who step up to positions of leadership. It happens because, at a community level we care, and we just get on with it and make it happen.

“You can be anxious, sensitive, kind and wear your heart on your sleeve. You can be a mother, or not, an ex-Mormon, or not, a nerd, a crier, a hugger – you can be all of these things, and not only can you be here – you can lead.” (Former Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern)

Nau mai Jose

This week we welcome Josephine (Jose) Apiata to Te Whenua Taurikura. Jose joins us as the new Finance Assistant.

Jose attended Aranui High School and graduated from the University of Canterbury in 2015 with a Bachelor of Commerce in Accounting and Taxation. Jose was previously working with Raelene Rees Chartered Accountants, a role she took up in 2018, and has long admired the mahi Te Pūtahitanga o Te Waipounamu. Nau mai ki Te Pūtahitanga o Te Waipounamu Jose, we are looking forward to getting to know you better.

A Slice of Poutini

A Slice of Poutini is about much more than carving. Business owners Hannah Te Whata (Ngāpuhi) and Haylie Fry share a common desire for a space of connection and creativity – a place where they can stay in touch with nature, other artists and carvers, and the community they live in. Read more about this Westport-based business here.

Director vacancies

Te Taumata are seeking to appoint two Directors to the General Partner Limited Board of Te Pūtahitanga o Te Waipounamu.

Applicants must demonstrate a strong and proven track record and the ability to provide leadership oversight to current issues and trends, while strategically preparing for the future needs of Te Pūtahitanga o Te Waipounamu and the outcomes of the whānau we support. For more information, see here.

School holidays sorted in Bluff

Te Pūtahitanga o Te Waipounamu is proudly sponsoring four events for rangatahi in Bluff this month. Your Corps and Insert Coin to Play Charitable Trust are holding FREE Multiplayer Video Gaming events this school holidays. This kaupapa strives to provide accessibility for these kinds of experiences, allowing rangatahi to learn new social and computer skills and grow connections with other people interested in gaming.

Each particpant gets two hours of game time. All you need to do is register at

The dates are:

Monday, April 17 – for all Bluff kids (ages 8-12); 1pm – 3pm

Monday, April 17 – for all Bluff teens (ages 13-17); 4pm – 6pm

Tuesday, April 18 – for all Bluff kids (ages 8-12); 1pm – 3pm

Tuesday, April 18 – for all Bluff teens (ages 13-17); 4pm – 6pm

Some of the Your Corps crew at an event in Bluff last year.