Between us we have a wealth of down-to-earth experience as educators, change agents, leaders, organic growers, hosts and cooks. We also have a passionate commitment to good relationships – with each other, with Ngaati Te Ata, the mana whenua of our area, with our employees, neighbours and the wider community. Together, in our different ways, we continue to work towards sustainable development and social justice in Aotearoa.
Our wider work team
We have always employed local women part-time on the land, and some also for catering , housekeeping assistance or fruit processing. Chris Hull, a local farmer, has worked for us since 2006. Before her, Nicky Reynolds was with us for 7 years – she is now Collection Curator: Herbs, Edibles and Salvia at the Auckland Regional Botanic Gardens. Jan Lowndes helped us for 11 years with catering and housekeeping, and is now back assisiting with preserves; Liz La Sorsa now assists with catering, and Angela and Sharon with housekeeping. A new team member, Jayne Bright, works with us weekly as well as coordinating community gardens in South Auckland.
Richard Hudson (author of Organic Growing in New Zealand), has managed weed control in our regenerating native bush since 1995, and Neil Thomson maintains our lawns and tracks.
Members of Ngaati Te Ata often work here, as groups on contract, as young people earning money for special activities like participation in international sporting events, or for ongoing projects such as our heritage weaving flaxes, managed by Moeatoa Minhinnick and her wider whanau.
Since 1994 we have hosted WWOOFers (Willing Workers On Organic Farms). They have ranged in age from 18 to mid-sixties, and have brought interesting cultural dimensions (from 27 different countries so far) to our home and business, as well as a huge amount of welcome assistance.
Altogether, we are very fortunate in the wide range of help we continue to receive on the land, and with our fruit processing and other activities.