Greetings from our partners in New Zealand

Greetings from our partners in New Zealand

Posted on November 15, 2019 by engage

Naku te rourou nau te rourou ka ora ai te iwi

With your basket and my basket the people will live

This Maori proverb exemplifies the way in which two organisations, half a world apart, can work together so that young people not only live but thrive.

As a result of a series of serendipitous events, engage in their future and Activity Centres’ NZ National Body found out about each other and realised that we were working in the same educational field and that we had much to learn from each other and much to share.

Each party brought their ‘mana’ to the table and through conversation, presentations at each other’s conferences, skype meetings etc a strong bond has developed.

Here in New Zealand the presence of 8 key engage in their future members (including Toni Munoz-Bailey, the then Chair) at our inaugural Activity Centres’ Conference energised us and gave us momentum. It also opened doors for us with government departments and most importantly with the Minister responsible for developing a new ‘Learning Support Action Plan’ – a major overhaul of the way in which all learners access relevant support. They also provided Tracey Martin (Associate Education Minister) with schools to visit in the UK that would inform her vision for the shakeup that was about to happen in New Zealand.

As a result of this relationship with the Minister we have been able to be at the table and have input into the content of the Action Plan. At each stage of this journey we have been able to have conversations with Toni, Sharon, John and other engage in their future members (via skype, email and whatsapp) so that our ideas can be tested and sharpened. As I write, the fine details are beginning to take shape and the interesting thing is that it uses many of the ideas and thoughts that our UK colleagues have shared with us. So it may not be overstating things to say that engage in their future has helped to shape the ‘at risk’ provision of a nation!

So a big Kia Ora to our dear friends at engage in their future. We look forward to seeing you all again and if you’re ever in the neighbourhood then get in touch and stay for some Kai.

Donna, Jenny, SueAnn and Jonathan
Activity Centres’ NZ National Body

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