Meet our new GenderTick Manager
- Thought Leadership
Where did you grow up and what’s your best memory of that place?
I grew up in South Auckland with my 4 sisters. We always had a busy, noisy house with lots going on. I love that we could sing, dance and laugh together. There was always someone performing.
If you could give your younger self (aged 18 or 21) some advice what would it be?
You have a voice, and its ok to use it! When I look back at situations form my younger years, I wish I had had the courage to speak up. I never had a problem standing up for other people when I saw they were being treated badly, but I found it hard to stand up for myself. This is something that has changed for me over time as I grew in self-confidence.
What would you like to see changed, for the better, for all women?
Equality for all women, regardless of their demographic characteristics. I hear the saying- ‘we are all in the same boat’ often, but this couldn’t be more wrong. We are not all in the same boat, we are all in the same storm – some of us have yachts, some of us have dinghy’s and some of us are treading water. Aotearoa still has a lot of work to do to recognise and understand underrepresented groups in order to support them, and level the playing field. Some women are dealing with challenges beyond gender. For example, when you look at ethnicity, sexual orientation, accessibility, neurodiversity, socio-economic status, mental health – these are all extra barriers many women are facing.
Can you share a time or moment when you felt unstoppable/invincible/on fire (and why)?
After 7 years of trying to get pregnant, two surgeries and IVF, I finally become a mother. My new-born son was placed on my chest and I finally felt complete. I was told it was likely I would never have children, so knowing that I pushed myself to the absolute limit both physically and emotionally, and I beat the odds, I feel proud that this broken body grew two amazing, beautiful children.
Can you tell us why you joined the Y?
Diversity, equity and inclusion are something that I have always had a passion for throughout my life. In fact, the more I do this amazing mahi, the more I have come to realise that diversity, equity and inclusion are my purpose. Aotearoa still has a long way to go in this space particularly when it comes to gender, and I am proud to be part of this movement. It all comes back to people, knowing our people, understanding our people, and educating our people. I know and love this work so much, and I am not done.