Haere ra

With the arrival of Koanga (Spring) we look across the whenua and see the rise of  new growth and enterprise. Koanga also tells about the harvest, and that  the fruits of our shared labour in the mara are waiting to be collected.  This time of change and transition can also be seen in recent developments within our team at Toi Tangata.

As many of you are aware we have bid farewell to our Senior Programmes Manager Callie Corrigan and our our part time caring administrator, Awhina King. These two ‘tino sharp’ wahine leave us for new mahi challenges closer to ‘home’ and we will miss their laughs and smiles in the office.  

Callie has left us  to undertake a role with a new post-settlement partnership between  Iwi and the New Zealand Police, and in her new role will be focussing on reducing violence in Te Hiku o Te Ika. Awhina has​ ​been​ ​successful​ ​in​ ​a​ ​new​ ​administration​ ​role​ ​working​ ​for​ ​Whaiora​ ​Medical​ ​Centre.  Whilst our team is sad to lose these wahine, we are also super excited for them as they both move closer to  home and contribute to their own whanau and iwi aspirations.

We have had some awesome adventures together with these two wahine and we wish them all the best in their new roles. The years have flown and we appreciate the time and contribution they have made to Toi Tangata’s direction. From organising the day to day to co-ordinating the infrastructure and delivery of our core activities, you have both done a great job and we are grateful for your contribution.  We join others in the wider Māori health sector to wish Callie and Awhina the best on their new journeys ahead.

"My first encounter with Dan was her interview. She walked into the room with a big grin of the infectious kind.  Within the first few moments we knew we’d stumbled across a  unique individual and Danielle joined the Toi Tangata bringing a great ball of energy with her.

Her first day started like all new staff being welcomed into our team, with a whakatau.  She came in with her whanau and after the formalities were done it was cuppa tea time.  Those of you who know Dan must surely know this- she's pretty big on snacks and coffee. So big  that she even brought her own cake to the whakatau! It was one of those layered cakes, and all I remember is that it was delicious and tasted of honey.

During her time with us, I had the privilege of sharing an office space with Dan, so everyone else in the team could count on us for snacks. We always had snacks lying around somewhere in our office!

Dan was someone whose ambitions never wavered; she constantly kept us on our feet with continuous new learning.  With her help, we've all been given the ability to grow with the tools provided by our organisation. Without Dan's support though, those tools would be useless to us. The learning  journey she began is something we've all had to continue through self-teaching since she’s left.

Dan, I'm sure the whole team would agree that we all learnt a lot from you over the past couple of years and I just wanted to let you know the impact you had not only on myself, but the rest of our team. You will forever be remembered by those amazing curls, your amazing smile (with amazingly pearly white teeth) and more importantly the quick wittedness you showed all of us in any conversation you had;  you had an answer or a response to everything.

It truly has been an honour working with you these past couple of years and I thank you for your friendship, your encouragement and your 'just being you'.

Wherever your future takes you, and what ever job you take up, I know the people you work for will be in for a real treat.

They say the secret to an awesome working environment is the people you work with and I can say you definitely made my working space awesome!

Although you've left us and moved on (a recent newlywed with a new move to the Solomon Islands), it is very rare that a week that goes by where your name isn't brought up in general conversation.  Now that we've all been connected to your hard-case 'blog' I feel as if you’re only on holiday and look forward to the day you'll return to us.  

I miss my work colleague, a very close friend I got to know over the past couple of years and someone I know I will never forget.

Thank you Danielle, I look forward to your regular updates online and also look forward to the day we get to meet again and have coffee and snacks.

All the best in your endeavors, Ma."