Youth Horizons Award Winners for 2019

calendar icon
17 December 2019

Each year in December, we present awards to outstanding Youth Horizons staff members who are nominated by their peers. We are very proud of our winners and look forward to seeing their continued contribution to Kia Puāwai in 2020. Below are summaries of the nominations from the recipients’ peers:

Chief Executive Award

For the first time, this was awarded to two staff members in 2019 – Ratai Nelio (Team Leader at Glenmore Girls’ Lighthouse in Auckland) and Shiva Shabanpour (Support & Business Application Analyst, IT Team).

Ratai Nelio: Ratai was nominated for her dedication to the health, safety and well-being of her colleagues and the rangatahi in our residential homes in Auckland. Ratai is passionate about health and safety and is considered a H&S guru. Without Ratai’s mahi, our houses would not be the safe and inviting homes they are. Ratai is also a great supporter of and contributor to the Pasifika Komiti. 

What Ratai said about her award: “As one of the Recipient for the 2019 C.E. Award, I would like to thank Marion Heeney for this outstanding Award. I felt very honoured and very surprised to receive the CE Award for my dedication to Health and Safety. I am very grateful to all the staff who have nominated me for this CE Award. Thank you.”

Shiva Shabanpour: Shiva was nominated by one of our regional kaimahi who depends heavily on National Office support due to their distance. Shiva’s dedication, friendliness, patience, courteousness, and willingness to go the extra mile has been noticed by many and commended by her team, wider Kia Puāwai, the entire leadership team.

What Shiva said about her award: “It was a sobering and surprising moment when I received the CE Award. I am humbled and extremely honoured to be receiving such an important award. I am earnestly grateful for the recognition I have received for my work. It is a relief to know I am on the right track! It is difficult for me to express just how much your thoughtfulness means to me. Thank you, again.”

Te Toki Pou Tangata Award – presented by the Māori Leadership Group

Te Toki Pou Tangata award for 2019 presented by the Māori Leadership group goes to Corrine True, the Senior Admin in the Waikato office. Corinne is instrumental in making sure karakia is practised daily, so staff become familiar with the language and the importance of Tikanga Māori in their everyday mahi while at Kia Puāwai. She is compassionate and supportive and really keeps the Waikato-Taranaki whānau together. Ngā mihi ki a koe, Corinne.

What Corinne said about her award: “I was totally shocked and overwhelmed to receive this award. Receiving the Te Toki Pou Tangata award is a huge honour and hard to put into words. I am happy it sits in the Waikato officer for the year. It is a reminder that our values are living. Although presented to me, I feel it is a team achievement as everyone has contributed to my growth. Thank you.”

Tautua Residential Award – presented by the Pasifika Komiti

The Tautua Residential Award was presented to Dana Hikaiti from our Waipuna Whare in the Bay of Plenty.

Dana embodies and demonstrates through a multitude of examples the meaning and essence of the Tautua Award and the values of Kia Puāwai in her mahi, including regularly going above and beyond her duties, and developing great relationships with the rangatahi in the home. She works hard to understand their individual differences and needs and creates work plans and activities that suit them accordingly. Dana is always willing to help her kaimahi and cover other shifts, is a great advocate for rangatahi, steps up to support and mentor new staff, and is being trained to become and health and safety rep for Waipuna Whare. Dana is a well-deserving recipient of the Tautua Residential Award – Congratulations Dana! Malo le tautua! Malo le tauivi!

What Dana said about her award: “I was so humbled to be nominated for this award. Although I was overwhelmed to receive such recognition, I also really appreciated the acknowledgement. It means a lot to have received the award and I feel that I have accepted it on behalf of my team and my Practice Leader, as without them, I would not be able to fulfil my job role. Thank you!”

Well done to all our winners! We are so proud of your achievements and look forward to seeing who will take out the awards for 2020!

CE award winners with Marion 2019

CE Marion Heeney with Ratai Nelio (left) and Shiva Shabanpour (right)

Toki winner

CE Marion Heeney and Kaumātua Pita Te Ngaru with Corinne True (middle)

Tautua Award 2019

CE Marion Heeney and Pasifika Advisor Synthia Dash with Dana Hikaiti (middle)