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Working together to create social connection

louise-reesLouise Rees
National Coordinator Social Connection Services
Age Concern New Zealand

Loneliness has been in the news lately. We’re seeing headlines about a loneliness epidemic, and the health effects of loneliness. There is concern about lonely older people, and the economic impact of loneliness and social isolation as our population ages. We’re seeing articles about Age-Friendly Cities and Communities, and the UK’s new minister for loneliness. There are campaigns to end loneliness and promote kindness, and there are stories about people and communities coming together.
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Beyond Aid towards a ‘Pacific Union’

Josie PaganiJosie Pagani
Council for International Development

There’s been a lot of talk about a ‘Pacific Reset’ recently and for New Zealand’s international NGOs working in the Pacific, this could be transformational. Our members are excited.

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Snap, Crackle and Pop

Anya_ComVoices (1)Anya Satyanand
Executive Officer
Ara Taiohi

I want to talk about hope. Yesterday I had the privilege of witnessing one community opening its space, arms and hearts to another community, full of hope and generosity. In the whaikorero much was made of the easiness of beginnings- but it’s what happens in the weeks and months that follow and how we deal with difference and difficulty that defines the real quality of a relationship. Afterwards kids ran around in the dusk and we talked about hope. The kind of hope that is always present at events like these, but hangs particularly heavy in the air right now around Aotearoa in all the places where people are doing it tough. It’s in these communities that the community and voluntary sector are doing their most important work. Read more »

What is a charity?

Ros 2015 short hairRos Rice
Executive Officer
Community Networks Aotearoa

In a discussion the other day, the subject of ‘What is the definition of a Charity’ came up?

This is an interesting question because this subject has been grappled with for a long time. If we look to what is currently being held up as a definition, that which is used by the Charities Commission, the definition is actually based on the Statute of Charitable Uses which came into force in 1601 directly after the Poor Law of 1601.  Read more »

Waitetoko – Steaming Water

tim-barnettTim Barnett
Chief Executive
National Building Financial Capability Charitable Trust

For most weekends this year my partner and I have been travelling from Wellington up and down to Tauranga-Taupō, a small settlement about a third of the way up between Turangi to Taupō on State Highway 1. That’s because his (our) hapū, true to the name of its’ marae, has been bubbling away – maintaining that marae (Waitetoko), planning a strategy and structure for the next few years, and mounting a bold bid to amend a Settlement Bill (Tūwharetoa) currently before Parliament.  And playing their part with the 25 other hapū of the iwi, which have come together as the Post Government Settlement Entity; that body is developing its shape, values, character and mission before handling a host of Settlement issues. Including land, iwi advocacy, placement with other organisations aspiring to leadership, building up each hapū to the challenges of a hapū-centred settlement.  Read more »

Do we really want guns in our schools?

Warren L 200x300Warren Lindberg
Chief Executive Officer
Public Health Association

Police figures show they seized 1227 firearms in the last financial year, Police Association president Chris Cahill told Otago University’s Summer School last month. Police know of 13,331 military-style semi-automatics (MSSAs), 40,605 pistols, 4676 restricted machine-guns and 1419 other restricted firearms. An AR-15, a type of MSSA, was used in 1990’s Aramoana massacre and in the recent Florida school shooting. Read more »

The quest for global citizenship education

ronjaievers-headshot1Ronja Ievers
External Relations Coordinator
Hui E!

Nobody would disagree that today, more than ever before, the globe is part of our everyday lives. We are linked to others on every continent. Socially through media and telecommunications, culturally through movements of people, economically through sharing one planet, and politically through international relations and system regulations. But, while globalisation draws us together, ongoing tensions and conflicts tear us apart. Read more »

2018 – bring it on!

marionblakeeditedMarion Blake
Chief Executive
Platform Trust

This has just got to be the year where the promises, ideas and pilots turn into serious action for the mental health and addiction services of New Zealand.  That’s because we just can’t keep on going around and around describing the problems and offering solutions that disappear into the vortex.  The idea that we can innovate our way out of this chaos is brave, however we’re going to need more than an app for this. Read more »

A better life for all

gill_greer_prencwGill Greer
National Council of Women of NZ

My grandmother spoke English with a very heavy German accent, having learned it from her parents as a small child. She left school at 12, and went on to run a general store in Upper Atiamuri as if she had an MBA. When I began university at 16, I learned German, and when she asked me to “say something in German” I’d recite, “ein, zwei, vier, funf, sechs” several times while she smiled. I did it to please her. Belatedly, I realised that when people are denied the chance to learn their own language their loss goes far beyond words. Read more »

Sanctions for Christmas

photo of Trevor McGlincheyTrevor McGlinchey
Executive Officer
NZ Council for Christian Social Service

Work and Income – A Caring and Supportive Environment?

Reports from the members of the New Zealand Council of Christian Social Service (NZCCSS) consistently relate to the negative treatment of New Zealand citizens at Work and Income offices.  These citizens were seeking to access their rightful support from the New Zealand Government. NZCCSS acknowledges that fine people are employed at Work and Income and they are committed to ensuring individuals and families do get the income and other supports they need.  Yet, somehow, people exposed to Work and Income feel demeaned and threatened by the way these offices work. Read more »

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