KiwiMANA mentoring Matters

IMAGES: by Charlie in 2017 @charliewickbomstudio ]

Ko wai koe? Who are you?

Intelligent. Capable. Resilient. Tough. Loyal. Afraid. Vulnerable. Lonely. Hope-less. Exhausted.

He earned the Red Bands gumboots because he picked himself up, tried again, and again…with real intention to grow and develop some  skills to be his best self. He cried when he was acknowledged with those boots.

Not in regular school all his teen years. In and out of Corrections Facilities since the age of 12 . ‘Professional’ criminal activity since 11. 

Born into a whānau that struggled with abuse, addiction, poverty – a ‘normal’ very different to societal expectations.

During 2017-2019 (and we’re still in touch today) we hung out with him, mentored him, befriended him and developed some trust and respect-both ways. 

To be completely honest, he has been one of my greatest teachers. My judgement and tolerance got shook up, rattled to pieces and replaced with respect and compassion. 

This human may have many flaws, and may continue to make some sad choices, but this human is a survivor AGAINST ALL ODDS. This tamariki has seen and experienced life that would destroy many of us.

In 2017 we asked him to tell us his dreams. He was completely baffled. He did not know HOW to dream. He lived in survival mode and there was no space for hopes and dreams.

He’s now a Tane who has sustained employment for many years, who has pivoted his life around and who will hopefully, continue to be a contributing member of our society. 

Mentoring by people who cared; listening, sharing time, patience and love, helped this rangatahi develop a sense of self respect, tino rangatiratanga and mana.

I am so very proud of this tane, and so very humbled by him. 

kiwiMANA MENTORING MATTERS– we need more mentors. Our tamariki need you. 

CHANGE LIVES for good. Find out more here

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