Supermen and women strut their stuff at Karapiro

Karapiro Domain was awash with super heroes on the 17th of November 2017, as the annual Enrich+ client celebration got under way. The theme this year – yes – you guessed it, was ‘super heroes’. We were very fortunate to have spiderman and several of his similarly skilled brothers and sisters attend, along with superman and his family, the incredible hulk, Richie McCaw (in her All Blacks gear of course!), wonder woman, and many more. The celebration brings together people we support and their families and friends and staff, with heroes well represented across all who came.


Each year, people with disabilities work with the staff to plan the celebration, decide on the event location, food, and entertainment. This year, we were thrilled to receive sponsorship from Mike Goble at Pak n Save, The Warehouse in Te Awamutu, Contact Electrical, Waipa District Council and Greenlea Meats. Tony Egan, CEO of Greenlea Meats also brought the BBQ and he and his team cooked our lunch for the third year running.  Brendon Perfect was thrilled to see Tony’s team at the celebration, as they had given Brendon a guided tour of the meat factory earlier in the year, and renewed their acquaintance.


With a fabulous hot day, people sang, shimmied and shook to the sounds of the Tim Armstrong band, as they belted out some well-known hits. The Dunk Tank was very popular, with many of our guests on the day excellent shots, much to the dismay of those who were brave enough to perch above a tank of very cold water, hoping that the thrower would miss the mark and they’d get out of the situation without getting wet. No chance of that!


For those interested in some high rise antics, Adventureworks provided people with the opportunity to get their feet off the ground, and ‘fly’some 20 metres above the ground on the high ropes equipment. There were some very courageous individuals who all harnessed up, got a completely new view of the world from above. It was such a pleasure to see the delight on so many faces, as one after another, young and not so young, conquered their anxieties and did something completely out of their comfort zone.


Rough and tumble activities can be a challenge for some people with disabilities given limited mobility but the Zorb balls provided the ideal opportunity to have a smashing time with each other, and come out unscathed. The balls appealed particularly to the men, who once encased in a ball, would run into each other, bounce off, fall over (protected by the ball that surrounded them), get up and repeat it all over again.  It was tremendous fun, but exhausting work!


Last year, staff considered whether having a celebration with 250 people all together was still the best way to celebrate the end of the year and up and coming festive season. With more emphasis on individualised support, choice and control, we wondered whether those we support may decide they’d prefer a range of different celebrations. When asked, the resounding response was they still wanted to share in the event together. Maybe it’s about friendships, and having the opportunity to try new experiences, which extend and challenge. Maybe it’s about the fabulous food. Whatever it is that keeps people coming, the Enrich+ team are always inspired by the gusto with which those we support take part, push themselves to try new things, and have a great day of fun.


People that Enrich+ support are feeling positive

Every two years, Enrich+ asks for feedback from people using our services. This feedback helps us to continue to develop and improve what we are offering to disabled people. We have used an independent surveyor, Anne Wilkinson, to lead and facilitate our surveys which ensures greater objectivity, and this year 50 people that Enrich+ support participated.


Feedback highlighted some challenges with computer resources that we are looking into, as well as the people we support being able to transfer the skills they are developing at Enrich+ into their everyday lives. Where individuals are living in residential accommodation or at home Enrich+ want to work more closely with those supports to ensure skills learnt with us can be used in other areas of their lives.


Questions that received the highest percentage of positive responses included:

– are you able to practice your cultural and religious beliefs at Enrich+, such as karakia and waiata?

– do you think your cultural needs are respected?

– do you like the staff who work with you every day?

– do you think the staff talk to you in a way that is friendly, polite and respectful?

– are the activities you do in the community well organised?


The survey report commented that there is increased opportunity for people to learn about Māori culture and themselves, through the Cultural Ambassador Service and participants of this service get real huge pleasure and a sense of wellbeing from the engagement.


There were good scores given in the section on staff, showing that staff at Enrich+ are well liked by clients and are polite, friendly and respectful. Clients felt highly valued by Enrich+ staff.


Alongside the survey, there was an open discussion held with the parents of those attending Youth+, our facilitated group for 13-25 year olds with autism. The feedback from the parents was positive, including comments that:

– attending the group is teaching their youth social behaviours that they are able to use in other areas of their lives

– participants self-confidence has grown as they have learnt about social constructs that most people take for granted, such as irony and sarcasm

– youth are becoming more talkative with their peers, making more friends and sustaining relationships for longer

– the Youth+ programme provides the positivity and acceptance young people need


Some of the participants in the group travelled up to an hour to attend, which for Enrich+ is an endorsement of the outcomes being achieved by individuals at Youth+.


Overall there was an encouraging response to the survey questions indicating that the people we support are enjoying the services they receive with Enrich+, and the positive results being achieved.


Julian is the People’s Choice

The IHC Art Awards provides artists with an intellectual disability the opportunity to have their talent recognised, their voices heard and to sell their work. Enrich+ were delighted that Julian, won the 2017 IHC Art People’s Choice Award for his work, Invisible Magic.


Te ika a Maui Maunga

Four artists supported by Enrich+ were also part of the IHC Art Awards this year as finalists (top 100). Peter’s “view of the land and sky” Te ika a Maui Maunga was a mixture of māori design and nature and Stevie’s Grandfather was dedicated to her late grandfather, a very special man for her and the painting returned home with Stevie, to where it belongs.







Down on the Farm

Pauline and Sarah attend our art service in Te Awamutu, and submitting their work to the IHC Art Awards was a first for both of them. Goddess of Dawn came from Pauline’s passion for Greek Mythology and Sarah was inspired by her memories of her grandparents house for Down on the Farm.


Goddess of Dawn

Sarah also attended the art awards at Shed 6 in Wellington along with our CEO, Wendy Becker, Support Worker Theresa Siemonek and Ian Cotterell.  Ian has been with Enrich+ for over 20 years. Each year he has submitted pieces to the IHC art awards and when the opportunity arose to attend the awards this year Ian was thrilled to go along and enjoy an evening dedicated to the artists. Ian also went to Te Papa Museum and was amazed at the Gallipoli Exhibition. The awards evening has inspired Sarah and Ian to put forward art pieces in 2018.


Julian with his People’s Choice Award

Enrich+ were delighted that Julian, won the 2017 IHC Art Awards People’s Choice Award for his work, Invisible Magic. Julian is supported by Enrich+, however his submission to the art awards was independent of our services. The artwork was selected as a clear favourite from the 30 finalists in this year’s IHC Art Awards, receiving a total of 194 votes. Julian also won this award last year for his artwork Tapa. “It was an awesome feeling winning again this year and great being in Wellington again for the award ceremony but I’m not that keen on the flight to Wellington and the bumpy landings!”, says Julian.

Invisible Magic


Invisible Magic is a finely detailed patterned drawing created using pen and ink, which Julian says is a style of drawing that he greatly enjoys. It took over two weeks to complete Invisible Magic with time committed each day to completing the piece of art. He was presented with the People’s Choice Award and his $1000 prize at the Shed 6 celebration. Invisible Magic also sold for more 2.5 times more than its reserve!


Julian is planning to spend his prize money and the money from the sale of his artwork on a holiday to the Gold Coast to enjoy the theme parks.


Patchy Progress for People with Intellectual Disabilities


This years IHC survey indicated that at a glance people with intellectual disabilities continue to face barriers to living good lives and the quality of people’s lives depends on where they live, individual circumstances like wealth and connections, and, too often, luck.


The IHC survey, conducted in July, attracted more than 650 online responses, with the majority from people with an intellectual disability and their whānau. People were asked questions relating to healthcare, the work force, money, education, being included, home and community life, being heard and fair systems with regards to accessing workable funding, support and services.


At a glance people with intellectual disabilities continue to face barriers to living good lives and the quality of people’s lives depends on where they live, individual circumstances like wealth and connections, and, too often, luck.


Three-quarters of respondents told IHC that they don’t get the right support to enter the workforce, and 80% felt adults were being shut out of employment. Enrich+ has a supported employment service committed to supporting people with disabilities find paid work. Our own research and feedback from employers makes it clear skills and experience are not the most important things for employers. Employers are however looking for  people that are trustworthy, reliable, good listeners, and are team players.


For Enrich+, providing information and support to businesses about employing people with disabilities is important. Spending time with employers to understand the needs of their business and also knowing the skills and experience of the people we support means we can job match.

Being able to provide post-placement support also, for up to 12 months, is part of our service and may include:

– giving advice and tips on the type of support a person may need to learn the job

– on the job training for specific tasks and productivity coaching

– identifying natural workplace supports and providing co-workers with support to develop a relationship with their new colleague


People told the IHC survey that “work is better than being at home doing nothing”. People are motivated to work and Enrich+ can support you to find that great job!


Hamilton Online Disability News Facebook Page

Hamilton Online Disability News is a great Facebook page with announcements, news and information relating to the disabled community in Hamilton.


This is a closed group for people with a disability, their whānau, and people who either work in the disability sector or provide personal support to people with disabilities.


Membership to the group is approved by the group administrators and people requesting membership may be asked the following questions:

– How did you find out about this group?

–  What is your connection to the disabled community in Hamilton?

– What topics are of most interest to you?


To join the group search for ‘Hamilton Online Disability News’ on your Facebook page. You can also invite friends, family, colleagues or associates to join the group.


Puppy Love

“Who let the dogs in, who, who, who?” That would be Janne, our Team Leader in Hamilton. Now fostering puppies for the SPCA, Janne realised that not many people that Enrich+ support have had positive interactions with dogs and brings the puppies to Enrich+ once a week for cuddles, walks, feeding and toileting!


Cats, dogs, hamsters, guinea pigs, rabbits, fish and even mice and rats can be found in many New Zealand homes; loved and cared for pets that become part of people’s families. Sadly though there are over 48,000 animals that are abandoned, abused and neglected each year and those that are rescued by the SPCA need a temporary home to recover before being adopted into a loving family.


Passionate about supporting not only people, Janne Nottage has recently started fostering puppies. Realising that many people that Enrich+ support cannot have a pet due to their living circumstances, Janne decided to create some  opportunities for them to interact with puppies. This has evolved into doggy day-care once a week, with the people we support providing care for the puppies.


Everyone wants to have fun with the puppies, giving them cuddles, playing fetch but the reality of pet ownership does come with responsibility and cleaning up messes! Being aware of someone else’s routine and putting their needs before your own can be challenging for some people and socialising the puppies, feeding and exercising them is developing people’s team work skills, communication skills and life skills.


For the people we support, taking care of these puppies also has physical benefits – exercise when walking the dogs, development of their coordination by holding the lead, while walking and navigating their surroundings. Uneven footpaths when you aren’t normally steady on your feet can be challenging and stopping the dog running here, there and everywhere!


The puppies’ skills are also being developed. Animals abused or neglected often don’t understand what it means to play or the enjoyment they can get from that. The team at Enrich+ are injecting playtime into the puppies lives. The chances of the puppies developing fear or aggression is also being reduced by being in different environments with different people.


The staff at Enrich+ can certainly vouch for the benefits of bringing pets to work. Pip Hawkings, Facilitator at Enrich+ says “the atmosphere is so different when the puppies come in. They lift everyone’s spirits, people are in a good mood. The puppies bring out the calm and compassionate nature in everyone, they make everyone smile”.  Studies have shown that pets in the workplace do create a calming environment, and encourage social and positive interactions, relaxes people and eases stress .


Touching a dog is a first for some people. For Robert there was a fear of animals amidst sensory issues but with gentle encouragement and in a safe environment Robert happily cuddles the puppies, a major achievement, with him now saying “I like dogs now and touching them”.












 Brendan’s Greenlea Visit

Enthusiasm and knowledge gained Brendan an invitation to visit Greenlea Hamilton for a tour of the plant and to meet the Chair of the Board, Peter Egan.


Brendan loves meeting new people, and at last year’s end of year celebration he got chatting to Tony Egan, Managing Director of Greenlea, Graham Green, Operations Manager and Andy Thomas. Brendan shared with Tony, Graham and Andy over the BBQ that he used to ride with Osbourne’s Transport when they delivered stock to Greenlea, and shared his knowledge of Greenlea. Impressed with Brendan’s enthusiasm Graham invited him to visit Greenlea Hamilton and have a tour of the plant.


The visit took place this month and on the day of the visit Brendan enjoyed morning tea with some of the staff at Greenlea Hamilton, and was given the rules of the plant, including the health and safety guidelines he would have to follow. Brendan’s tour including an explanation of the slaughter-floor process, being shown the hot boning room and he was given the opportunity to try some packing techniques.


A highlight of Brendan’s day though was being picked up in a M & D Hubert truck and being taken out to Waitoa, as well as a visit to Peter Egan’s farm, the Greenlea Foundation Chairman. From a very young age Brendan has had a love for trucks, and being able to spend time with truck driver Murray Herbert was a highlight of the year for Brendan. Peter also had another surprise for Brendan at the farm…driver duty on the Gator. Brendan was so  excited at having been able to drive the Chairman around.


The Greenlea Foundation Trust has been supporting Enrich+ for quite a few years now, providing funds that have benefited people using our employment service, Worx, and those on the autism spectrum. Enrich+ are proud to be associated with a fabulous trust that not only provides sponsorship but opens their doors to the people we support.



Exciting Times Ahead

There are major changes coming over the next few years to the disability sector. Some would say it will be transformational! The team at Enrich+ are very excited about the recently announced changes which seek to improve the lives of disabled people, and their whanau, and create a more cost-effective disability support system.


The transformation plans at this stage are high level – and have involved disabled people, whanau, providers and Government officials in a co-design process. From the reports we’ve heard, it was truly co-design! And of course, there is much more to come in moving from high level ideas to a great system that meets people’s expectations. If you want to learn more, go to : http://www.enablinggoodlives.co.nz/system-transformation/



Farewell Te Awamutu, Hello Thames

“In the two years that Bevan has been involved with the Enrich+ Worx programme he has grown to work independently, developed and advanced his outdoor skills, and displayed a maturity and courtesy to others”, says Jo Morrow, Facilitator.
Deborah, owner of Matariki Motor Lodge, speaks highly and fondly of Bevan whom she employed two years ago to mow the lawns. Deborah quickly realised Bevan’s potential and promoted him to Groundsman. Bevan was responsible for trimming hedges, sweeping leaves and developing new gardens.
Mechanically minded, Bevan always checked the mower was up to the job and in tip top working order. Going the extra mile Bevan would always check the weather was good for mowing and being extra thorough he would give the lawns a double cut. Deborah was particularly impressed that Bevan would always check with her which units were occupied so that guests weren’t disturbed by the noise of the mower. A dedicated and keen staff member, Bevan was definitely part of the team at Matariki Motor Lodge, attending two end of year staff Christmas parties during his time working at Matariki.
Bevan has also spent time working at The Warehouse in the garden centre, helped maintain the Pioneer walkway, provided support at Enrich+ Mahoe St service, and delivered the local paper twice a week at Enrich+.
We will all miss Bevan, and wish him all the best as he starts the next chapter in Thames.


Sit N Be Fit

Keeping fit and healthy often becomes a goal at some point in everyone’s life. A small group started by taking part in a Sit n Be Fit class, ideal for people with mobility difficulties, designed to make exercise fun, easy and safe for people of all ages. Before long the laughter and commitment of members intrigued others, and before we knew it, we had 10 members! The class is part of the Active & Well Green Prescription, a free 3 month coaching and support service to help people lead a more active and healthy lifestyle. The team have loved having Hayley from Sport Waikato leading them through the therapeutic exercises and making everyday activities easier to perform, including core strengthening, balance work, stretching and relaxation.


Many of the group have seen an improvement in their balance and fitness level. They are feeling good about themselves! The Active & Well Green Prescription is open to anyone who is not doing 30 minutes of moderate activity five days a week and the programme is funded by the Ministry of Health. The team at Sport Waikato have great advice, support, tips and tricks for you and support you to find great activities, workshops and classes where you can meet like-minded people. Our ‘Sit n Be Fit’ members recommend you visiting Sport Waikato’s website and fill out the ‘Get a Green Prescription’ to start your journey toward a more active and healthy lifestyle!


Pay Equity Settlement

As of 1 July 2017, support workers in aged care and disability services have been awarded an increase in wages. The new starting rate is $19ph, and for those with qualifications they may be eligible for up to $23.50ph. While there are some challenges in the pay equity arrangements, we are delighted to finally be able to remunerate staff appropriately – our staff are worth every cent!


Waikato Wellbeing Show

Enrich+ were again proud to be part of the Waikato Wellbeing Show this year, with a stand at the show and several staff manning this over the 3 days to interact with members of the public and share about the many services we have to offer.


We also had a team of volunteers directing cars to parking wardens and collecting koha for parking at the gates. Starting at 9.30am on the first day of the show, the crew worked through to 2.30pm alongside the Hamilton City Cadet Unit. With lots of laughter intermingled with the serious business of collecting the koha, the volunteers also got free entry into the show as an acknowledgement of thanks.


Thoroughly enjoyed by the team there are already plans in place to put hands up for volunteering next year, and for all 3 days!


Fire Goddess Mahuika

Mahuika Community House in Te Awamutu now has the fire goddess in full colour on the walls. The mural was designed by Theresa Simonek, Support Worker at Enrich+ and a well know artist who has exhibited numerous pieces of her work in local shows.


With support from Bunnings Warehouse and Resene for paint, resources and their time, Theresa came up with the design and dedicated a lot of her own time fine-tuning the details of the mural, as well as working with a group of Enrich+ artists once a week over a period of months.


Since completing the mural Theresa has been commissioned to complete a wildlife landscape on another outside wall for a client. The Mahuika House Trust are ‘over the moon’ with the art work and highly recommend Theresa and her Enrich+ students for any future endeavours.


Positively Art

Enrich+ artists were delighted to be part of Te Awamutu Altrusa’s fundraising exhibition raising money for the Cancer Society and other service projects.


Held in the private garden of Crowe Howarth, art works were displayed and available to purchase from artists across the Waikato and Bay of Plenty.


Simon’s Vintage piece sold for $70 and Marie’s Camelia for $45. Congratulations to both.









Expanding to Tauranga

Another new exciting development for Enrich+ is being able to offer services in the Tauranga area. With a dedicated and committed member of staff in the area, Michelle Fokerd will be supporting people into employment through ACC, supporting people to live independently (Supported Living Contract) and will be facilitating a Youth+ group for 16 – 25 year olds with autism. This service is $15 per person, per session.


Michelle has moved to Tauranga, having worked for Enrich+ since 2013 as a Facilitator in Taumarunui. In this role she supported people to be a part of their communities, through finding voluntary and paid work, finding leisure/creative opportunities, and through being a facilitator for the Enabling Good Lives Demonstration. Michelle knows Enrich+ vision, values and purpose well and is happy for you to contact her if you think she may be able to assist you to access the right service for you.


Capturing the Library

Capturing the development of the new Te Awamutu library was a project that just grew and grew.


From March 2nd to the 21st October a group of keen photographers captured images of builders, community members and the Library opening ceremony and were proud to take the best of the best and display in a photo album for the library team to enjoy.


With over 1300 images captured by local photography members Caleb, Daniel, Elizabeth, Joseph, Julie, Leanne, Rahn, Robert, Shannon and Tammy there were some tough decisions to be made about which photos made the cut.


“Some of the group had never taken a photo before but were very keen to learn how to use a camera. Not only can they now use a camera but they understand how to ensure the lighting is right, how to position themselves and the photo subject, explains Margaret Mohi, Support Worker. “It’s been amazing being part of their journey developing photography skills and seeing the end result. The photos are a way of showing their perspective on what they see around them.”




Supporting People to Live Independently

Enrich+ and Enrich+ Spectrum Energy are extremely excited to announce that we are now offering a Supported Living (SL) service. Supported Living services help individuals with disabilities to be as independent as possible. It may include offering one to one support to:

– find somewhere to live

– learn household tasks

– be aware of safety in the home and community

– complete personal shopping

– budget money and pay bills

– read and understand mail and keep records

– travel independently

– deal with agencies such as WINZ or the bank

– access community facilitates

– develop friendships


Subcontracting to Community Connections, Enrich+ will be offering SL services in the Waikato and Bay of Plenty. Enrich+ and Community Connections share similar values as organisations and have been working together on this project for almost a year. Community Connections have supported living services on the Kapiti Coast, in Hutt Valley, Palmerston North, and Hawkes Bay.


It is really important each person gets to choose their own staff, to help them on their journey to greater independence. Vikki Lynn, Enrich+ team leader, meets monthly with each person receiving support  to check how things are going, and to make changes to the support plan if need be. Whānau are also a key part of getting the support package right. Family remain in a persons’ life long after support services change or are no longer needed, and they are so important to the person having ‘a life like any other’.


To access the service, the person needs to have had a Needs Assessment through Disability Support Link or SupportNet. The agency identifies how many hours per week the person will need. The person and their family then choose the provider that suits their needs best. If you are looking for a Supported Living service, we do hope that you will check Enrich+ and Enrich+ Spectrum Energy out!


Yee Haw Celebration

Our end of year celebration for the people we support took place at Te Awamutu Sports Club this year. After a week of rain, everyone woke up to sunshine and not a rain cloud in sight!


Sheree Garratt, Empowerment Administrator, along with the organising committee made up of staff and people we support, provided a fantastic day of entertainment, with Waipa Wranglers Line Dancing group who demonstrated and got the crowd involved.  Country and western singers Tony and Fay Bryant and a performance by David Smith, a lover of country music and member of the Te Awamutu Country Club.  David also sang at the Enrich+ staff Christmas function.


With people taking part in basketball games, tug of war, gumboot throwing, horseshoe tossing and a round of cricket, everyone worked up an appetite and enjoyed a BBQ lunch with great steak provided by Greenlea Meats. For the thrill seekers amongst us there was a vertical bungee and mechanical bull; as well as a petting zoo and the chance to ride a Clydesdale horse for the animal lovers. There was an awesome and fun western themed photo booth and some people were kept quite busy looking for the needle in the haystack.


A great day enjoyed by all, the celebration was a bull slapping success!




Greenlea Foundation has provided support and sponsorship to Enrich+ for quite a few years now. Not only do they provide top quality meat, cooked on their mobile BBQ van by their CEO Tony Egan, and his colleagues for our end of year celebration, they have also provided funds to Enrich+ for the past five years. This funding has been of enormous benefit to people using our employment service Worx, and to people on the autism spectrum. Many of these individuals would not have been able to afford the services they need, without Greenlea Foundation’s fantastic financial support.


Giving Back

Supporting people’s passions and talents and working with them to find opportunities to show-case their work is part of what Enrich+ does. For many artists their goal is being able to exhibit their work and over the last year Enrich+ supported several artists in displays at the Te Awamutu museum, the Sandz Gallary in Hamilton, Te Awamutu Frames, and the Altrusa Positively Art event. One exhibit that featured in the Te Awamutu Courier in July 2016 was the Public Art Hanging at the local Redoubt Bar and Eatery.


Two of the artists, Shannon Clark and Ian Cotterell created live art at the event and gifted this back to owners, Faye and Mick Henderson. Shelley Blair, Enrich+ Team Leader says “they just wanted to give back and say thank you for providing the opportunity to exhibit and sell their work in such a great community location”.


“It’s been great seeing the articles in the Te Awamutu Courier about the joint collaboration from Enrich+ and the Redoubt” says Jenny Smith, Marketing Coordinator at Enrich+. “The event itself was a great way for the artists to connect with the community. We so appreciate what a great community Te Awamutu is and how supportive it is of the people Enrich+ supports”.


Artists supported by Enrich+ are looking forward to more exhibits this coming year.



The Sky is the Limit

New Zealanders are surrounded by a great environment for adventure. Whether it is on the water, in the hills or on a mountain biking track, there are many opportunities to pitch ourselves against the elements.


adventure-clubTo make such opportunities more available to people with disabilities, Enrich+ recently formed an ‘Adventure Club’, with the purpose of creating a positive and fun environment to push boundaries and stretch people’s self-confidence.  The first Adventure Club activity took place in August, where a group of 17 individuals went indoor rock climbing. More recently the group chose to attended the All Blacks vs Argentina game at Waikato stadium, which turned out to be a great game with lots of socialising going on. For Daniel, having been to the stadium before but never an All Black’s game it was a great night out, “the atmosphere was amazing and the stadium was packed”, Daniel told us.


Future activities may include white water rafting, waka-ama, and abseiling – the sky is the limit; no adventure is too big or too small! With adventures taking place evenings and weekends, Adventure Club is a great way to socialise, participate in new activities and challenge yourself. Come and join us!


Congratulations Annette, ‘People Manager of the Year’

Enrich + 0011Enrich+ are delighted to be the employer of Annette Kershaw, Te Awamutu People Manager of the Year awarded at the Waipa Networks 2016 Business Awards.


Annette has been with Enrich+ for nearly 10 years and has been in a variety of roles in our vocational services. Since July 2014 Annette has been our Empowerment Service Manager, overseeing and guiding the development of our vocational services by leading the team to work with the people we support to have a life like any other in the community.


Going over and beyond expectations, Annette empowers staff to develop, and identifies growth opportunities for her team members through coaching and mentoring. She ensures that staff are fully supported and knowledgeable, and really puts her heart and soul into everything she does for our business and the community.


Annette’s approach has had a massive positive impact on staff morale since taking on the Service Manager role, she really is a gold nugget.


Congratulations again Annette on winning Te Awamutu People Manager of the Year!


Public Hanging a Success

With the local bar and eatery showing support for the local Special Olympics Enrich+ approached owner Mick Henderson about featuring art at the Redoubt, as a way for artists to connect with the community and showcase the work they produce at the Rosebank Art House.
Artist Stevie Cook enjoyed the afternoon, selling all the pieces she displayed at the event with one piece being shipped internationally to Melbourne. She has even been commissioned by a patron for a piece of work, and loves that her work is popular. Stevie has recently launched a Facebook page ‘Stevies Creations‘ to market her pieces and is selling greeting card images on her artwork.


public-hanging-drawingShannon and Ian made good use of the surroundings at the event, creating live drawings through the afternoon. Shannon’s drawing is displayed here on the left, and she is still finalising the drawing to present to the team at the Redoubt in honour of the great afternoon. Shannon was impressed with the turnout, and commented on the great food and drink the Redoubt provided. She has also been commissioned to produce artwork for someone that was at the event.
Congratulations to all of the artists that sold their pieces!



Artists reach top 30

Three pieces of art submitted by artists supported by Enrich+ have been selected in the 2016 IHC Art Awards.  The top 100 artworks were exhibited at the ‘Art on High Gallery’ in Lower Hutt end May/early June.  Shannon Clarke and Simon Heke have entered the awards previously, however it was the first time that Helen Colville has entered art.


Enrich+ were notified this week that Simon Heke’s art piece has made the top 30 selection!  A function on 16th June in Wellington will announce those in the final.  We wish Simon the very best of luck.


Artist Vincent Van Schalkwyk from Te Awamutu, won the Art Awards in 2012 with his piece ‘Life Stories’.



Innovation Aids Choice and Control

A Supported Decision Making Hui took place on 20th-21st April in Auckland.  Developed by the Office of Disability Issues, and sponsored by Auckland Disability Law, the hui brought together people with experience of supported decision making, their families and whānau, and disability and community organisations and agencies.  Enrich+ Team Leader Shelley Blair and an individual supported by Enrich+, Julie Tate attended the hui.


Topics included supporting people with dementia to have their say, equal recognition before the law, and communicating effectively with cognitively impaired, non-verbal family members.


A speaker of interest was Dr Bridget Mirfin-Veitch, Sociologist and Director of the Donald Beasley Institute who is developing a toolkit for professionals.


“I was particularly impressed with Dr Mirfin-Veitch, who is creating the toolkit,” explains Shelley “It’s designed to help professionals understand people with disabilities and their decision making”.



Voices Challenge Speed On Our Roads

The Waikato region have been selected to test a new approach on how speed is managed on our roads, and to demonstrate a national draft Speed Management Guide.  As part of this, people with disabilities were invited to participate in a workshop with Waipa District Council staff and Waikato Speed Management Steering Group.  Four individuals supported by Enrich+ formed a focus group, providing their views on road safety.


The aim of the focus group was to seek feedback on what would help to make local streets safer for people to get around. Questions relating to accessibility, modes of transport used and the best and worst streets in relation to safety were discussed.


The research being undertaken forms one of three parts of the Waikato demonstration project, including online discussion forums and a public survey. The project aligns with the RTC’s Regional Road Safety Strategy, and the Government’s Safer Journeys Strategy.


Thanks to Melissa, Hannah, Emily and Elizabeth for their contribution to the workshop.


Dream Comes True For Local Artist

The thought of having her own Art Exhibition has always been a life-long dream for local Artist Julie Tate. One that she has had her sights firmly set on, and now, given that her Art work has been exhibited, is one that has come true!


As a child, Julie consistently admired numerous forms of art work and marvelled over paintings in particular.


When Julie, born and raised in Te Awamutu, joined the Art Programme at Enrich+ many years ago, she discovered her flair working and experimenting with different mediums and subjects.  Julie has since entered her work into the 2015 IHC Art Awards, and has had success in selling items.


Today her passion lies with painting “Still life”, fuelled by her love of nature and scenery.  Julie’s art work was on display at “Te Awamutu Frames” Market Street last month, where she successfully sold several pieces.


Julie Tate art












Budding artists benefit from donation

Te Awamutu Rosebank Art Centre Chairperson, Michelle Bocock, gifted thirty canvasses to the artists that Enrich+ supports.


“We’re a non-profit organization and it’s been great to give back to the community” says Michelle

“This gift is a huge thank you to Enrich+ for their patronage and support”.


Rosebank Art Centre has been providing the 1920’s villa to Enrich+ artists for over ten years. The building is also used by afterschool students; tutored and untutored group sessions; and occasionally hosts weekend workshops. Enrich+ artists were very pleased to accept the koha, supported Enrich+ staff Teresa Siemonek and Lesley Bright.


“It’s just fantastic”, says Teresa. “These artists have already got some great ideas of what they will create using the canvasses”: Andrea wants to do a portrait of her grandmother; Wilhem is very keen to do more landscapes; Shannon wants to continue using her unique ink-pen design; Tammy wants to do a family portrait; Robert has a vision for a specific cartoon character; and Michael loves to experiment with his Picasso style”.


Currently the Enrich+ artists are working towards the IHC Art Awards 2015 which are held in Auckland on 2nd July 2015 at the Northcote Shopping Centre.  The finalists from this competition will then go on to have their work exhibited in Wellington at the New Zealand Nationals, potentially winning up to $5000.



The Work Partnership that Works!

In 2009, an idea turned into an opportunity for Enrich+ to partner with a local employer, Manuka Health.


Manuka Health needed a workforce to help with a short term work task, and the possibility of people with disabilities taking on that work was raised. This was such a success, that four years later, Manuka Health employ two people in permanent employment and eight other individuals who work between three and six hours per week.


There are also a small group of people supported by Enrich+, who gain real work skills and experience at Manuka Health, to assist them to gain paid employment in other workplaces. The work and training is undertaken at the business premises – and all who enter those premises are bound by the organisation’s health and safety policies and practices.


In 2013 we explored the ingredients that makes this partnership successful and how real employment outcomes for people with disabilities is achieved. Through a DVD and literature review we show the conception and implementation of the employment initiative with Manuka Health, as well as the views and experiences of those that Enrich+ support and Manuka Health staff. If you would like to view the full DVD (15 minutes long) please contact us


Check out our Manuka Health Partnership DVD

Read the Work Partnerships that Work literature review



Like to know more? Get in touch now