Annual Report 2018 presented at AGM 29 March 2019

The Aotea Family Support Group Charitable Trust
Te Ropu Manaaki Whanau o Aotea

The Aotea Family Support Group Charitable Trust is an Incorporated Society (AK/610840),
established 1988, and registered with the Charities Commission (CC23301).

Our Mission

“Giving every island resident the opportunity to live health, fulfilling, independent lives, and to fully participate in the community.”

Our Vision

To see the social, physical, emotional and spiritual wellbeing of the people of Aotea / Great Barrier Island fulfilled.

Our Philosophy

To provide social services to the people of Great Barrier Island using the following values:

Tika – the right methods and procedures that uphold integrity and confidentiality at all times.

Manaaki – a commitment to provide quality social services.

Aroha – the desire to explore all possibilities while interacting with others.


In 1988 the Support Group started fulfilling an important role in our community. Now 30 years on, we are delivering a range of services and activities to people in our community that enable community members to participate and develop themselves. This report shows what we achieved in 2018.

Over these three decades, the Support Group has grown into a mature and established organisation that has a well-defined place in our community with the services we provide. The trustees do their best to ensure the organisation can respond to the needs of the community as they arise and change. And as an employer and provider of care, the trust takes seriously its responsibilities for duty of care and ensuring safe and healthy work environments.

We have a diverse programme delivered by a competent team which is much appreciated by the community, so we are told. Our youth programmes are well attended, older people are cared for and socially active, individuals and families in crisis have someone to turn to and community groups are working together well.

The trustees are confident that our services for older and younger people are well targeted and provided efficiently. We gain that confidence from constantly assessing and reflecting with collaborators, in team meetings, at planning meetings and conversations in between, which allows us to respond effectively to the needs arising in our community.

As always our caregivers deserve a particular thank you for going above and beyond the call of duty, again and again.

Thanks to all our funders, sponsors and volunteers who make the important and necessary work AFSG does possible.

Lisa Eves (chair)

Our work

The Aotea Family Support Group is a charitable trust supporting residents of Great Barrier Island with programmes and social services for youth, families, senior citizens and anybody in crisis. The Support Group is a non-governmental organisation and receives funding from the Ministry of Social Development, the Ministry of Children Oranga Tamariki, the Ministry of Health, the Auckland District Health Board, Foundation North, the Lottery Grants Board, Auckland Council, the Great Barrier Local Board, and the Department of Internal Affairs with the Community Organisations Grants Scheme, as well as donations from within the community.

Our aim is to “Give every island resident the opportunity to live healthy, fulfilling, independent lives, and to fully participate in the community.” Our work is guided by an outcomes planning framework that is reviewed by staff and trustees twice a year.

The trust organises a range of services for family, youth, older people and community members in general. Many volunteers are helping in formal and informal roles in all areas. On average, the trust employs around 30 residents part-time.

Family Events

Commercial and public opportunities for appropriate family entertainment are limited on the island so the Support Group has for many years run a number of popular programmes for families.

Four School Holiday Programme were organised through the year, with varied programmes, mostly outdoors and ranging from swim sports to creative arts. Average daily attendance was 12 with total numbers up 72% from the previous year.

In December a family picnic was organised at Twin Pines with fairy lights in all the trees and entertainment for all. About 25 people took part in casual games and social fun.

The New Years Picnic was again held on the 2nd of January at the Claris Sports and Social Club, with the Fitzroy Family Fest the following week at the Fitzroy Landing Reserve. An estimated 1,000 and 250 people attended the respective events.

Support for Youth Development

Multiple risk factors expose our young people to risky behaviour and lack of achievement. To mitigate that, weekly activities were organised through the year to engage with Y7 and Y8 school children and correspondence students respectively, with often up to 12 children joining in.

The Annual Youth Trip took eight Y8 students from the island to Auckland for a few days to assist preparing them for eventually leaving the island for school and work.

In the middle of the year, the Support Group collaborated with the Aotea Education Trust to organise a very successful week-long Team Leadership event for island youth home from boarding schools with resident correspondence school pupils.

Support for Parents and Families

Raising families on the island, especially for single parents, can be challenging.  So referrals and crisis support was provided to families routinely. And another parenting workshop, again facilitated by Lucy Aitkenread, was held in April with 12 parents attending.

Three children benefitted from regular time spent with a ‘big buddy’.

Preparing for Aging

So that residents growing older who were not regular clients could also plan and prepare better for their later years, 8 individuals were assisted with Aging Advice, and referral to our Safe and Warm Homes Services, Home Maintenance Services and Installation of Emergency Alarms, as required. 12 people attended a session and free clinics with legal advice on wills and other issues.


Dependence on assistance inevitably increases with old age, so on Great Barrier, independent living can be challenging.  And people recovering from accidents are in also in need of assistance. With many being financially under-resourced, subsidised caregiving and other support can be very important.

Caregiving (‘homehelp’) services

The in-home caregiving service for older people contracted by the DHB had, like in the previous year, on average 33 clients looked after by 25 part-time care workers on average. Occasionally ACC also referred clients for in-home assistance.

Safe and Warm Homes Program/ Firewood Program

In its final year, this programme provided 41 clients with sufficient firewood to cover their needs through the winter. Thanks to the new Winter Energy Payment this programme was wound down.

Home Maintenance Program

This programme provides a ‘handyman service’ for non-consentable repairs, especially those identified in the ‘home safety assessments’, to ensure that homes are safe and adequate for older people. 29 jobs were completed for existing home care clients in the year.

Community van use by seniors

The two vans were in use every Monday outside school holidays to bring participants from Tryphena and Okiwi, who are attending the weekly Arts and Crafts meetings, as well as others needing a ride to Claris. Seniors also travelled in the vans to Over 60s event and the monthly outings

Aged residents: Positive Aging

While aged people can age well on GBI they can end up isolated because organised activities are insufficient, lack of transport and cost can be inhibitive, so the Support Group organises a number of programmes to overcome that.

The popular Over 60s meals were attended on average by 32 seniors every month. The venues attended included Claris Club, Tryphena Club, Mt St Paul’s Lodge, Stray Possum and the Golf Club.

On average 7 people join the Monthly Senior Outings, which in this year went to the Awana Campground, the Elephant Art Gallery, as well as visiting the homes and gardens of some well-known senior residents.

For most Mondays throughout the year, the Support Group arranged for regular Physical Movement Classes for seniors attending the Arts and Crafts mornings held at the Health Centre.

Welfare support for vulnerable people

Economic hardship, alcohol, drugs and family violence creates vulnerability and crises.

31 individuals and families with dependent children achieved agreed goals with general family focussed support, including advocacy and crisis support (referral,  food grants, flights to town etc).

In this period, 38 clients attended an average of 6 counselling sessions.

Community support services

Through the Support Group providing resources and capacity building, the community can work more effectively for the common good.

During the year the two Community Vans based in Tryphena and Okiwi respectively were driven by volunteers and our staff for just over 10,000kms and were used for 1426 rides. The Aotea Learning Hub was using the van 3 times per week to transport secondary education for students enrolled with Te Aho o Te Kura Pounamu, the correspondence school. There is also frequent use by other groups for one off events, like iwi huis and tangis, or annual events like the Garden Tour and the Wharf-To-Wharf race, and for regular programmes, like the northern netball group coming to Tryphena every Friday.

The Support Group arranged for and facilitated a Community workers Toolbox Workshop through ANCAD.

As the Support Group has a MOU with the GBI Community Health Trust, there is good coordination with the Community Worker for providing welfare assistance and for organising initiatives of benefit to the community, including the bi-monthly community group hui.

Other services

In 2018 the Aotea Family Support Group also …

  • Provided marquee and gazebos for public and private use.
  • Provided a place for surplus clothes and personal goods to be dropped in and picked up by others in need which in the period moved into a new building as the Clothing Exchange.
  • Maintained our website at with announcements and information, as well as a Facebook page to communicate and engage with our community.

Administration and support

MSD Approved Provider

As a result of the annual audit by MSD, we maintained our OSCAR approval under section 25 of the Social Security (Childcare Assistance) Regulations 2004. The AFSG has thus been confirmed as an MSD Approved Provider.

Old School Building

Thanks to the continued support from the Tryphena Hall Committee, the Support Group benefits from an excellent office space.


The vehicles operated by the trust consists of 4 Toyotas, two vans and two passenger cars. Our 7-seater Toyota Kluger has a hybrid engine and while it does most mileage, it runs most efficiently saving the trust a much larger fuel bill while reducing carbon emissions a little.

Policies reviewed in the past year:

2.1 Accident Recording, Reporting and Investigation  20.4.18

4.7  Police Checks  20.4.18

5.5  Financial Management  20.4.18

5.6  Overnight Camps and Outdoor Pursuits on School Holiday Programmes  20.4.18

8.0  Home Maintenance Policy  18.5.18

Youth Opportunity Grant

The Youth Opportunity Grant is awarded every 2 years, so it will be offered again in May of this year.

Health and Safety

The Trust regularly reviewed Health and Safety policies for all activities and places of work. One accident was notified to Work Safe NZ and our government funders during the year.

Our staff and trustees 2018

Trustees during 2018 were Lisa Eves (chair), Sue Eves (treasurer), Ralph Golaboski, Bruce Maxwell (dep chair, resigned 18.5.18), Norm Winger, with Ngaire Avery and Ed Hinson joining the committee in October of 2018.

Staff: Sue Thompson, Rendt Gorter, Sue Eves, Kellie Cleave, Keri Lyon, Lisa Eves

Volunteers: Too many to name.

Our supporters: Thank you

The Aotea Family Support Group Charitable Trust is a charity providing the residents of Great Barrier Island with a range of social services, resources, and organised events with public and private funding. The work of the Support Group is made possible through financial assistance from the institutional funders listed above, as well as our supporters and partners.

Aside from these institutional funders, the Support Group depends hugely on the in-kind support provided from many that can’t be named individually here, not least to avoid inadvertently omitting the most generous.

We also have many other organisations that collaborated or assisted with providing venues and other resources, including Motairehe and Kawa Marae, St John’s Church, the Great Barrier Heritage Village and Art Gallery, Barrier Social Club and Claris Sports Club, the schools at Mulberry Grove, Kaitoke and Okiwi, as well as the Sea Education Aotea Trust, the Golf Club and Glenfern Sanctuary.

Crisis support fund

Lastly there are many businesses that sponsor the New Year’s Picnic every year and thus are critical for funding the support that we can offer, particularly those that otherwise would fall through the gaps. The substantial donations and in-kind services given for the New Year’s Picnic deserve special mention as it makes possible the AFSG Crisis Support Fund, available for resident families and individuals who find themselves in need without support from family or government, due to illness, death or other unfortunate circumstances.

Particular thanks are due to Rennie Cox Lawyers, Broady’s, Fly My Sky, Chaos Charters, Aotea Gas/ELGAS, Max Howard, GBI Golf Club, Mount St Paul’s Estate, AB Fuels, The Currach Irish Pub, Shiny Paua Paddle Boards and Kayak Hire, My Fat Puku, Barrier Air, Stonewall Store, Bike Barn, Windy Hill Rosalie Bay Catchment Trust, Dave Erickson, Barrier ITM, Tipi and Bob’s Waterfront Lodge, Aotea Holistic Therapies, Great Barrier Pharmacy, Stray Possum Lodge, Barrier Automotive, and Swallow Catering, who all gave in-kind donations worth 100 to 1,000 dollars each for auction and raffle prizes.

Lastly, thank you to our long-standing patronesses, Fenella Christian and Maud McLean.

Thank you.