Meet the newest members of the TupuToa Team!
Early Career Development and Recruitment Lead
Tu Tangata! With a kete full of Māori development knowledge in the areas of local and central government, including tribal and education development, Awhina comes with a wealth of governance, education and employment experience to share with her TupuToa team and the development of a new early career leadership programme for our Alumni. Hailing from the mighty metropolis of Murupara in the heartland of Tuhoe, Awhina comes from humble “bush” beginnings and has achieved academically with a Masters as a Neurolinguistics Practioner, Post Graduate Diploma in Business for Māori Development at University of Auckland and Bachelor of Arts from Waikato University. Awhina is passionate for changing the face of the board room table where decisions made for us are by us. Tihei Mauri Ora!
Projects, Contracts and Funding Lead
My name is Ireen Manuel and I am from Savusavu, Fiji. I joined TupuToa in June this year as the Special Projects, Contracts Funding and Lead. I have many years of experiences in programme and activity design and implementation across a broad range of sectors which include health, education, tourism and agriculture. I specialise in cross-cutting issues, governance, strategic planning, monitoring and evaluation and reporting, financial and contractual management. My passion is in supporting young people to reach their career potentials and my role in TupuToa is allowing me to explore and lead the design of innovative projects and prototypes with many our partners.
I hold an Education Degree from University of Canterbury and a Master of International Development from Massey University.
Malo e lelei my name is Luvu Afemui. I am of Tongan descent representing the villages of Talihau and Utungake in Vava’u, born and raised in the beautiful city of Tāmaki-makau-rau – Aotearoa. Graduating with a degree in Sports Management my career journey started in the events industry and spans several years with work experiences both here in NZ and Australia. At the core of who I am my faith has been the key motivator and desire to serve our communities. I am privileged to be a part of an organisation that is a catalyst and change agent for our Maori and Pacific people.
Tena koutoa katoa,
Ko Tuhua te maunga
Ko Taringamotu te awa
Ko Petania te marae
Ko Arawa te waka
Ko Ngati Hine Mihi te hapu
Ko Tuwharetoa te iwi
Kia ora, my name is Lewis Tapene and I am excited and eager to join the team here at Tuputoa. I was raised in Whangarei where I was fortunate enough to grow up with kapahaka as a strong integral part of my whanau. I have previously studied a BSc at University of Auckland before deciding to follow my passion and have been a chef for the past two years. I hope to bring value to this already thriving team and continue the ongoing progress for Maori and Pacific in the cooperate sector.
Mālō le Soifua Maua ma le Lagi e Mamā, My name is Karl Moresi and I am a proud Samoan/Tuvaluan who hails from the land where all the big decision are made and Auckland Blues players go to become better, WELLINGTON!! I am a Victoria University of Wellington graduate with a BA in Political Science and International Relations. In transitioning into my new role, I will be shifting from one end of the spectrum in which I help high school students explore their tertiary options to now helping tertiary students navigate the waters into the workforce which is awesome. There is a samoan saying “e mamae le tava'e i ona fulu" the Tava'e is proud of its feathers. Being a Pacific Islander is something I am proud of and adding this new feather of Tuputoa to my cloak is something I am proud of too. I look forward to working alongside everyone.
Malo e lelei, ko hoku hingoa ko Florida Foliaki. I am of Tongan descent representing the villages of Ma'ufanga and Fasi. Following the completion of my Bachelor of Property and Bachelor of Commerce degree in 2017, I returned to my homeland as a volunteer teacher. During my 18months in The Kingdom I taught English and Economics at a local high school, as well as hosting homework help centres in the evenings. I have a strong desire to serve a purpose beyond myself and look forward to sharing my skillset and passion with the Tupu Toa Navigation Team.
Ki te hoe! One of our newest edition has jumped onboard the Tuputoa waka. Talalelei Reweti joins our Navigation team, where he will be supporting our interns throughout their Tuputoa journey. Tala has a Bachelor’s of Sport and Recreation and enjoys giving his time to coach at local schools and clubs. He has heart for his people and is determined to empower rangatahi with the tools they will need to enter the wider workforce. He is of Maori and Samoan lineage. Ko Ngaati whatua me Ngaapuhi nga Iwi and from the villages of Fa'atoia and Vaiala.