MASSiSS | YWiSS

MASSiSS – Multi Agency Support Services in Secondary Schools

Challenge 2000 has social workers in Aotea, Bishop Viard, Mana, Porirua, Naenae and Taita Colleges. Our social workers work with secondary school students and their families providing support to achieve their goals. We provide a wide range of interventions to improve the achievement and well-being of the students.

This service is community oriented, whanau and community inclusive, culturally responsive and strengths based. Our social workers are committed to early intervention and prevention focused. Outcomes are dependent on individual needs. These can include: attendance improvement, academic success, sporting representation, cultural engagement, developing leadership qualities and community participation.

Our social workers also help facilitate weekly breakfast and lunch clubs, run holiday programmes, provide mentoring, weekend camps, group work and are actively involved in cultural festivals and whanau events.

YWiSS – Youth Workers in Secondary Schools

Challenge 2000 has youth workers at Mana, Porirua, Naenae and Taita Colleges. The aim of this service is to improve engagement and achievement in mainstream education for year 9 and 10 students who are at risk of disengaging from their education journey and school community.

Our youth workers are focused on working with students to improve motivation, provide encouragement, set realistic and achievable goals, support participation and learning within the school environment and improve their overall well-being.

Jeffrey Reuelu-Smith

Jeffrey Reuelu-Smith

Youth Worker
Junior Seumanufagai

Junior Seumanufagai

Youth Worker
Fa’afetai Avei

Fa’afetai Avei

Social Worker
Kat Birdling

Kat Birdling

Social Worker
Anh-Dao Pham

Anh-Dao Pham

Youth Worker
Harley Thompson

Harley Thompson

Social Worker
Petrina Foaese

Petrina Foaese

Social Worker
Ebony Ngatoko

Ebony Ngatoko

Social Worker
Jan Love

Jan Love

Social Worker
Melanie Sandhaas

Melanie Sandhaas

Social Worker
Kerry Burton

Kerry Burton

Social Worker

Jeffrey Reuelu-Smith

Youth Worker

Kia ora I’m Jeff. I’m one of the youth workers at Challenge 2000. My role here involves working alongside young people through mentoring, boys’ groups and other various programmes that Challenge 2000 offers. It’s a great privilege to be working at a place like Challenge 2000, where everyone is committed to making a positive difference in our community.

Junior Seumanufagai

Youth Worker

Talofa lava, my name is Junior Seumanufagai. I’m originally from the beautiful island of Samoa and raised in Wellington since I was 9 years old. I’m a proud Catholic old boy of Saint Patrick’s College Town. I started working at Challenge 2000 in 2014 after I completed the 2013 Gap Year. I am privileged to be a youth worker at Challenge and working along side an amazing group of people who have a passion for youth, families and communities. My role as a youth worker involves; one on one mentoring, helping out with camps, supporting youth groups/retreats and also missions. I enjoy my time working at Challenge because each day brings something new and exciting. Challenge 2000’s purpose is to walk alongside young people as they make positive choices in their lives and strive to achieve their full potential.

Fa’afetai Avei

Social Worker

Hi, I am the MASSiSS Social Worker in Hutt Valley Colleges. I am a Wellington girl and grew up in Porirua East. I started with Challenge 2000 in 2015 and was attracted to its strengths-based vibe, can-do attitude and was impressed by the many services it offers. My working experience has been working alongside people with disabilities, child and adolescent mental health, education and general health.

Kat Birdling

Social Worker

Hi, I’m Kat. Having recently completed my Masters of Applied Social Work I am here at Challenge 2000 working with a range of young people and their families to achieve their unimpeded potential. I love variety, and believe that with Social Work I have found my niche’, with no day, like the people I work with being the same. Working with Challenge out in the community enables me to put my dynamic approach to work, while advocating for the social justice and solidarity which drives me.

Anh-Dao Pham

Youth Worker

Kia ora, my name is Anh-Dao and I'm a Youth and Community worker, Youth House support person & Mates and Dates facilitator.

I first got involved with Challenge 2000 in 2008 when I participated in a youth leadership programme. I pretty quickly realised that Challenge was something special and have stuck round, in a few different capacities, ever since.

I was so excited to return back to the team in 2018 whilst completing my Bachelor in Social Work.

No day is the same here which means new learnings and many different challenges everyday!

I feel extremely fortunate to be part of a team that's committed to honouring Te Tiriti o Waitangi, working towards social justice and making a positive difference in Aotearoa New Zealand.

Harley Thompson

Social Worker

E nga mana, e nga reo, e nga karangaranga maha, tena tatou katoa.I am pleased to join the crew and contribute and honour the legacy created by Kitty 30 years ago – Challenge 2000. Testament to this kaupapa is the support of the Catholic Church and the calibre of amazing staff. I look forward to being part of the team and continuing to build on the potential of rangatahi and whanau in the community.My personal philosophy is underpinned by manaakitanga. Mana is generally accepted as meaning prestige. Aki is similar to the word awhi meaning to support. In essence – supporting the mana of others or empowering people. As a restorative practitioner manaakitanga is a key focus.I was born into serving and working within social services and have had a range of jobs including being a cleaner at family homes while studying; working for CYFS in various roles for 20 plus years; consultancy role delivering an outcome focussed system called Results, Based, Accountability (R.B.A) to Whanau Ora collectives; tutoring the National Diploma in Youth Work (L6) and most  recently head of pastoral care and managing Te Aute College hostel for 5 years.I am indeed blessed to have had a full education of life experiences from bottom up merged with formal qualifications with a Bachelor of Social Work; Adult Diploma in Education and a Diploma in Hypnotherapy to support my practice. I studied Hypnotherapy in Melbourne for self-help and to add another tool to build whanau and rangatahi resilience – not to get people to eat onions or dance like Elvis – just in case you’re wondering. I am married with 2 daughters and 3 mokopuna.Ko Whetumaterau te Maunga, Ko Awatere te awa, Ko Horouta te waka, Ko Awatere te marae, Ko Te Aotaihi te whare Tipuna, Ko Te Whanau o Tuwhakairiora te hapu, Ko Ngati Porou te iwi, Mauriora!

Petrina Foaese

Social Worker

Talofa lava. My name is Petrina Foaese, My family and I are from the beautiful island of Samoa. I have been at challenge for 2 years and am enjoying every bit of it . Challenge 2000 has many values that my Aiga and I hold close to our hearts.

I am privileged to work for such a giving and loving organisation. I have always wanted to give back to my community and I thank Challenge 2000 for helping me achieve this goal. I am currently working in the Hutt Valley colleges doing youth work with awesome rangatahi under the Youth Worker in secondary schools government support programme.

This is great as it gives me and insight i what is needed out in the community to develop and harness the strengths of young people. It gives me the opportunity to work alongside youth and listen to their beautiful stories. Another programme I am involved in is Mates and Dates in the whole Wellington Region.This programme focuses on young people developing healthy relationships and recognising when relationships are damaging and put the young people in danger.

I am also currently studying a BA in criminology and education at Victoria university. I believe this study is helping me understand more about the work we do and why we love it.

Everyday is different at Challenge2000 and I am truly blessed to be part of this amazing Aiga.

Ebony Ngatoko

Social Worker

Jan Love

Social Worker

Hi, I am Jan Love the MASSiS social worker at Mana College. I have worked as a social worker in many varying roles in NZ, London and Dublin. I am a mainlander through and through but have been in Wellington for the last 11 years. I have a passion for children and young people. Combined with a huge passion for fairness, social justice and opportunity for all. It’s a privilege to work for Challenge 2000 and the students of Mana College.

Melanie Sandhaas

Social Worker

Kia Ora everyone, I’m Meli a social worker at Challenge 2000. My pathway to Challenge started in 2016 when I was a a social work student on placement from Germany.

I had the opportunity for three months to get to know an Agency which provides great support, along with a giant heart of love for young people. With those enriched experiences I went back to Germany. In 2017 I finished my study and started work in a community-setting working with refugees, families and young people with serious challenges and many strengths. I’m delighted to be back at Challenge now and to continue my work here. I’m based at Bishop Viard College in Porirua and work with the students, their Whānau and the staff.

My start coincided with an extraordinary time, the shutdown because of Covid-19. But as John Lennon said “life is happening while you’re busy making other plans”. Therefore, I try to organize the best support for the families and their young ones at the moment; dropping off food bags, activity packages or devices the students need for their online classes, organizing emergency accommodation, providing social work support and trying to keep in touch with the rangatahi.

Nga mihi nui

Meli

Kerry Burton

Social Worker

Kia ora. My name is Kerry, and I work as the Challenge 2000 Social Worker at Aotea College. My career into social work has been a natural progression.

After working at a local childcare centre, and starting a family of our own, I started looking after children in my home when my children were at kindergarten. I then became the supervisor of the after school care programme at my children’s primary school, while offering my services as a parent help at school during class time. From there, I got my Teacher Aide Certificate, which enabled me to secure a job as a Teacher Aide at a local college.

Funding for a youth worker became available at the college, and the college encouraged me to apply for the position, which I was successful in getting. I then gained my Diploma in Youth Work, and went on to achieve my degree in Youth Development. I found that I loved studying in a field I was passionate about – young people and their world – so I decided to go back into the classroom and extend my knowledge via a Social Work degree.

I am so very pleased to have been accepted into the Challenge 2000 whanau, as they hold the values and principles that I too hold close to my heart – social responsibility, personal dignity and social justice.