Kia ora Whanau,
Wow it’s been a roller coaster of a ride since we went into lockdown in March. We hope you kept up with our online communications – we’re pleased to be bringing our newsletter back into your hands again. Even though lockdown was a challenging period for all of us I was really proud of our Navigator team who stepped up to ensure whanau were okay, and if not, were able to offer support via extra food parcels and activities to help out. Thankfully we were able to secure some additional funding which enabled us to carry out this extra support.
Staying connected online provided a new form of engagement which the team embraced. We were able to set up a huge range of activities from Bboying classes, video competitions, fun online activities and games, plus we worked alongside our kura to support our Dreamers with their academic learning. Well done to all the Dreamers who submitted videos as part of our Covid-19 competition. If you’d like to read a little more about how we stayed connected during Covid-19 read here.
During lockdown we released our annual report. If you haven’t had a chance to look at this yet make sure you check it out here. This will give you a great insight into the programme.
Now that I Have a Dream is back on the ground it’s great to see the kids back at school and joining in our after school activities which are all up and running again. Just a reminder that if you need more information on our programmes then please contact us at any time through firstname.lastname@example.org , or your Navigator directly.
Some staff announcements for this year are well overdue! In February we welcomed Marcia Aperahama into the team as a Navigator for our 2020 Year 3 Dreamers. Marcia has settled well into the role with her Dreamers loving having her in their classrooms. Our latest staff announcement is that we have promoted Navigator Mo – currently our Y11/12 Navigator – to the position of Programme Manager commencing next term. She will work across the full Navigator team to support them in their mahi.
Congratulations also to Navigator Vincent Nathan who received his Bachelor of Youth Development during the lockdown period. This is a terrific achievement for Vince who has studied tirelessly during the last 4 years he has been employed with us.
Sadly though we will be farewelling Maka Siafa at the end of this term. Maka has been working with the Y0-2 Dreamers at Totara Grove this year and was our sports coordinator last year organising some inter-school tournaments. It’s with great sadness we see him go to pursue some dreams of his own.
Looking back on the year so far we can’t forget to thank those of you who attended our very big Whanau Event in February. We had over 800 of you come along to Tikipunga High School and enjoy a relaxing, fun evening with our team. Our facebook page featured some amazing photos of the event – check them out if you haven’t already. A big vote of thanks to the Rapid Response Team who provided the kai for the evening. We couldn’t have done this without them.
For those Dreamers who went to the Hillary Camp earlier in the year we hoped you had an awesome time and took away some very precious memories of that week. In the summer of 2021 we will not be going to Hillary Camp, however we will be running our very own holiday programmes over a week in January for all our Dreamers. We’re excited about this development to our programme.
Make sure you note your calendars to come along and support our Magnolia Gardens Open Days in Poroti, on the 8th, 9th, 15th and 16th August, which will be fundraising for our summer holiday programmes. Some of our high school Dreamers will be volunteering to help run the event. You can find more info here.
Hopefully you’ve also seen our new vans around town which were sign written earlier in the year. It’s fantastic now having our own form of transport for activities and events. They are like free advertising for us. Speaking of which, we’ve also had some free advertising spots gifted to us on TV3 and some billboards in Auckland. Our Charity relies totally on donations and given the struggling economy right now we know finances are tightening up for everyone, so we welcome whatever you all can do to keep promoting the mahi to continue supporting our tamariki – ka pai!
CONGRATULATIONS to Kiri Nathan who was awarded an MNZM in the Queens Birthday Honours for services to Maori and the fashion industry. I Have a Dream is lucky to have this special human as a Trustee on our Board of Directors. Kiri has also mentored one of our Dreamer Alumni – Amelia Unufe – who studied fashion design at Auckland University and is running her own label.
In Kiri’s words “It took me ages to figure out where my place was in the world, I never truly fit in anywhere, I was always too different…that feeling used to effect me, until one day it just didn’t anymore…”. We believe every child has something special in them. That’s why we work hard to help young people realise their potential, early on. We want to see more Kiwi kids making a positive impact on the world, just like Kiri.
Finally, don’t forget to keep an eye out on facebook for regular updates, photos and stories.
We love to receive your comments and any feedback at all is appreciated. Have a great July holiday break everyone.
Ant Backhouse – CEO
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