Central North News – February 2020

Ngā mihi mahana ki a koutou katoa / Warm greetings to you all,

Welcome back to 2020. Wow, we’re already into February and over the next couple of weeks you’ll be trying to get the tamariki back into the routines of life, especially those that attend school or preschool.  I hope you’ve managed to connect with whanau / family over the Christmas and the holiday break. I also hope that if you didn’t manage to squeeze in some recharge time for yourself, then you can over the next couple of weeks. 

I’m excited to introduce you to Heather Jeffcote, our new Central North Regional Coordinator:

Kia ora koutou,

I am excited to be starting my new role as Regional Coordinator. Gonny has been a wonderful support in our rohe (area) and I have big shoes to fill!

My family and I have been fostering children for the past 13 years and this has led me on a journey of learning about attachment and therapeutic parenting. I also have a background in education.  I know first-hand how important it is to have encouragement and support. I consider it a privilege to walk alongside caregivers, supporting them in their challenging role as we learn together how to understand the tamariki and rangatahi (children and youth) in our care in ways that can bring healing to their lives. I am looking forward to meeting and getting to know you all in our beautiful Central North region with it’s rivers, lakes, mountains, geysers, forests and beaches! Please feel free to call or email me if you need support (or just to let me know who you are). 

Ngā mihi nui, Heather

March Celebrations

The first week in March is a very important time in the care sector in New Zealand. Sunday 1st March we kick off with Children’s Day.  This is a day to celebrate the importance of tamariki in our lives, in our communities and in our society. This special day reminds all of us how precious our children are and how we all have a responsibility for them collectively. Check out this website for info and ideas:

or check out their Facebook page: Children’s Day New Zealand.

Following on from the Sunday celebrations is Foster Care Awareness week.  This is a week to highlight the wonderful role you all play in our communities and society too!  Whether you’re a whanau caregiver, Nanny, Aunty or Foster parent, it’s a time through all the challenges, to say the role you do in caring for our tamariki is so vital, important and lifesaving! 

We’ll keep you posted on events for that week. 

Excellence in Foster Care Awards: Friday 6th March 2020

To round out Foster Care Awareness Week, we will be celebrating the winners of the Excellence in Foster Care Awards! This year it will be held in Wellington. These amazing recipients will be announced closer to the date.

One-off School Start Up Fund

School and year start up fund applications are open until the 28th February for those receiving the Unsupported Child’s Benefit or the Orphans’ Benefit. Make sure you apply for this one-off grant of between $400 – $550 (depending on the child’s age). Click on button below to find out more.


Self-care is important at any time of the year. Often the transition back into the school term is a challenging time for us as our tamariki adapt back into routines. Their internal fears of new teachers, new classrooms, new friends and new expectations can create turmoil that is expressed through behaviour. Acceptance and empathetic environments are the most effective ways to a stress-free beginning to the school day. Parenting tamariki with special needs, developmental trauma and/ or challenging behaviour is undeniably stressful. If you get a chance to read our article, then please take it. If you don’t get a chance, try and create an opportunity to do so as sometimes we just have to stop, make a cuppa and do something for ourselves.


Our Term One training schedule is now live! We are very excited to introduce a new 3 hour Workshop Discussion Session – Understanding the National Care Standards. Click the button below to find out more and to register.

Support Groups

Grandparents Raising Grandchildren

Tricia Corin
Benefits Advocate for GRG has assisted many grandparents receive their entitlements they are due. Please contact Tricia through the GRG website or 0800GRANDS, 0800 472 637 (for those outside Auckland).

Tauranga Grandparents’ Group
Held monthly at Families Achieving Balance (FAB).  The Kollective, 17th Avenue. First big new building on right going down hill. Contact Cherie 0277242445 for more infomation.                    

Papa Kainga Foster Care Support
Contact Kathryn Hawkes
Email: papakainga@nullikindergartens.nz or call: 0800 250 052 ext 3 to learn more about this wonderful service which is available in the Tauranga, Rotorua and Taupo regions.

BOP Fostercare Association Support Group
Meet on the first Friday of each month 10.00am till 12 midday next to Top Kidz, MacDonald St, Mount Maunganui. Come and share a cuppa, receive support and awhi each other in the wonderful work you do. Email Elissa for more information elissa_langton@nullhotmail.com or call 021 462 030.

FASD Support Group Tauranga
26 Mission St, Tauranga City. Contact Milli Lovell on 021 527 604 for more information.

Forever Families Tauranga is a support group for Permanent Caregivers or those interested in Permanency. They meet monthly according to interest. Email Laura usakiwi@nullme.com

Taupo Support
Contact Belinda on 027 241 1775 or email belindamerz1@nullicloud.com for support, information and get togethers.

Whakatane Support
Email Julia Burrup:  juliajburrup@nullgmail.com or phone 027 918 0917.

Tokoroa Support Group
Contact Jill on 0274816182.

Have you joined our closed Facebook Group?

As a member of Fostering Kids NZ you have exclusive access to our CLOSED Facebook groups. These are only open to caregivers that are members of Fostering Kids NZ. This allows our members a platform to seek support, information and resources.  If you are not already a member search Fostering Kids NZ Central North Support, and request to join the group. It’s easy and it’s free!

Click the link below to join!

 Fostering Kids Central North NZ Closed Facebook Page

Nga mihinui/Kind regards,


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