Who We Are

We established the Te Puna Taiao Charitable Trust to help reduce inequity in our education system, to make schools more welcoming inclusive places for children of all abilities and backgrounds, and to create the next generation of kaitiaki.

We aspire to improving the lives and outcomes of our children, reduce current inequities and build stronger, more resilient whānau and communities.

 
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Our People

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Hannah Simmonds
Co-Founder and Trustee

Ko Tainui te waka, ko Waikato te awa, ko Wharepuhunga te maunga, ko Raukawa te iwi, ko Ngāti Huri te hapū, ko Pikitu te marae.  

Hannah Simmonds is an educator with over 10 years experience teaching in secondary schools in New Zealand and overseas.  She currently provides professional learning and development support for school leaders and teachers in early childhood, primary and secondary schools.  She has a Science Degree and Graduate Teaching Diploma, and is studying towards her Masters in Indigenous Studies. Hannah wants to support teachers, leaders and communities to see the potential in working together to ensure better outcomes for all tamariki.  She is passionate about maximising opportunities for Te Ao Māori to inform mainstream education, so that Māori tamariki can experience more equitable outcomes. Hannah has three children with her partner Brad and they live in sunny Whakatane.

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Erin Green
Co-Founder and Trustee

I tipu mai ahau i Piopio. Ināianei, ko Whakatane taku wā kāinga noho i te taha o tōku hoa tane a Che. Ko Ngāti Tahu Ngāti Whaoa te iwi o tōku hoa tane, aku tamariki hoki.

Erin Green is co-founder and Chair of Te Puna Taiao. She was brought up in Piopio and has a Master’s degree in Marine Science and an undergraduate degree with a double major in Psychology and Zoology. Erin worked for many years for central government in environmental and social policy areas such as community-led marine management, biosecurity, and refugee and migrant resettlement. She is passionate about reducing inequity in our communities, encouraging kaitiakitanga, and helping to build communities that provide the right environment for each child to reach their full potential. Erin lives in Whakatāne with her partner and their four young children.   

 
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Che Charteris
Trustee

Tēnā tātou katoa, Ko Paeroa te māunga, Ko Waikato te awa, Ko Ngati Tahu-Ngati Whaoa tōku iwi, Ko Te Toke tōku marae, Ko Taniko Reweti tōku tīpuna mama, Ko Che Charteris ahau

Che Charteris currently chairs the commercial board for Tauhara North No. 2 Trust and is CEO and Chief Investment Officer of one of New Zealand’s largest and most diversified primary food and fibre production groups – Craigmore Sustainables.  In these roles Che’s focus is on improving and developing our whenua. In his role as trustee on the Te Puna Taiao Governance Board, Che is keen to use his financial management and governance skills to help the organisation improve outcomes for our tamariki and communities. Che was born and raised on the East Coast and Gisborne and now enjoys the many benefits of living in Whakatāne with his partner and their four young children.

Toni Owen
Trustee

 
 

CORE VALUE

Whanaungatanga

WHAT IT MEANS

Relationships of care and connectedness are fundamental

HOW WE WILL IMPLEMENT IT

We work by developing open, honest and genuinely collaborative relationships with all our partners: schools, communities, iwi, hapū, local and central government policy-makers, relevant experts nationally and internationally, and other not-for-profits.


CORE VALUE

Manaakitanga

WHAT IT MEANS

The moral objective to care for others and Te Ao Turoa (the enduring world), to ensure wellbeing

HOW WE WILL IMPLEMENT IT

We aim to really listen to what each school and community wants from their space to help ensure that all children and communities to have access to the things they need to live healthy happy lives.


CORE VALUE

Wānanga

WHAT IT MEANS

Engaging in shared learning conversations and research to inform our next steps

HOW WE WILL IMPLEMENT IT

We continually work to ensure that the advice we provide is accurate, up-to-date and relevant. Our aim to set the standard for best-practice in the spaces we operate. We are developing evaluation programmes to ensure our work is achieving what we want it to, and is as effective as possible.


CORE VALUE

Ako

WHAT IT MEANS

The reciprocal nature of learning, from those around us and the environment we engage with

HOW WE WILL IMPLEMENT IT

We work to ensure that our mahi reflects latest scientific research, Mātauranga  Māori and government policy. We are on an ongoing journey of our own learning and aim for all our relationships to be reciprocal, whereby we share what we know, and we learn from what others know, working collaboratively for the benefit of our kids.  


CORE VALUE

Kaitiakitanga

WHAT IT MEANS

Our obligation and responsibility to protect and sustain the natural world for generations to come

HOW WE WILL IMPLEMENT IT

In everything we do we aim to act respectfully and responsibly toward Te Ao Tūroa and help to engender a love for the natural world and the value of kaitiakitanga in our future generations.


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Partner Organisations

 
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Duncan
Cotterill

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Allandale
Primary School

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Claire House
Photography

 
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Toi te Ora

 
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Focus Chartered Accountants Ltd

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Kimi Ora Community School

 
 
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WHAKATAUKI

"Ehara taku toa i te toa takitahi,
engari taku toa he toa takimano"

 

My strength is not mine alone, but the strength of many