A wonderfully diverse bunch of people, from all kinds of personal, cultural and professional backgrounds. We are parents, counsellors, nurses, company directors, therapists, builders, teachers and much more. Some are young people; others are in retirement. We would love YOU to be involved, too.
Richard Handley, Secretary - I was raised in a farming family from Maxwell and completed my education at Nelson College and Massey University where I gained a Bachelor of Business Studies (BBS) and a Diploma in Agriculture (DipAg) both with Distinction and with the award of Massey Scholar. I am also an Associate Chartered Accountant (ACA) and a Cost and Management Accountant (CMA). After a period farming and with Dalgety NZ as a Project Accountant, I joined the Asian Development Bank and worked in Solomon Islands, Philippines and Nepal. Returning to NZ, I joined Rural Bank as the Northern Area Manager. My later career includes CEO of Lakeland Health, the Human Rights Commission and Deputy CE of Unitec (NZ’s largest Polytech) before taking up the role of CE of WITT in New Plymouth. I am a Councillor with NPDC, on the TDHB and on a number of Trusts and other organisations including the Vestry of St Mary’s Cathedral. I am married to Virginia (Gini); we have three adult children and six grandchildren.
Nikki Morris, Support Worker - My husband (Paul), our 4 young boys & I moved to Taranaki, from the UK in 2013. When I heard of the retreat, I knew I wanted to be involved in such a fantastic cause, who wouldn't! I volunteered 3 days a week in the early days of the retreat, working on the grounds & getting my hands dirty. The retreat need volunteers in every aspect, which is great for me, as I can keep on giving. I'm so proud of Taranaki businesses/people for all their support, faith, time & encouragement, it most certainly pushes me to do better.
Catherine Heaven – Support/Care Kia Ora, I am from Taranaki. I have a BA from Massey Uni, major in Psychology and Sociology with elective papers in English Lit, Rehabilitation, Religion and Anthropology studies thrown in for good luck! I moved to Australia and worked supporting people with mental health concerns to live independently in their own homes. Then to Scotland to explore my ancestry and was employed in a fish and chip shop, an employment agency, a backpackers as well as for Edinburgh Women's Aid in their women's refuge. At the refuge I was sole charge for over the weekends; involved in social activities, crisis intervention, health & safety procedures and domestic cleaning. Returning to NZ in 2011, I work for Supporting Families and Whanau in Mental Illness Taranaki and support families who have a loved one with a mental illness. We help the families to understand mental illness, learn coping strategies, set up emotional boundaries, and reduce stress, among other things. I have completed a certificate in Te Reo Maori and plan to continue Te Reo studies upon completing my Masters in Social Work through Massey.
Jenny Goddard, Architect I am pleased to offer Architectural Services to support the Planning, Resource Consent and Building Consent process for Taranaki Retreat. I recognise the real need in our community for the place of retreat and healing proposed by the Trust.
Gordon Pitcairn – Retreat gardens development and maintenance. I've lived in New Plymouth for over 40 years. For the last 15 or so years I have worked for the NPDC. I have a deep passion for gardening, caring for animals and creating music and art. In my personal experience, to help in the recovery process, a connection with the outdoors is essential to nourish the body, mind and spirit. I lead a team of volunteer gardeners - working on projects such as an orchard, vegetable and flower gardens and the development of places to relax and reflect. I have an NZ Cert in Horticulture but as all gardeners will say, you never stop learning both from successes and setbacks! I also provide a weekly meal for the site and the ongoing collection of books for the lodge.
The list of those directly involved in the oversight and establishment of Taranaki Retreat (leaving aside contractors, many of whom donate their time), numbers over 75 volunteers.
Amongst them, we are blessed by the guidance of Busing Russell Taranaki Accountants, who are providing Accountancy, Administrative and Human Resources support.
Other roles in our awesome team include the following :
Grants : application and compliance for implementation phase
Communications : liaising in the neighbourhood and in the sector
Fundraising : exploring other funding possibilities / in-kind gifts
Treasurer : preparing and presenting accounts
Clinical : advising on clinical/medical issues that arise
Spiritual : prayer support and direction in ethical matters
Safety : identifying risks and issues, and helping in resolution
Building : ongoing development of the facility
Landscaping / Planting : directing the green stuff