Strong Voices

Empowered Lives

November 25, 2022

We are heading rapidly towards the end of year – the weather is supposedly warming up (though I’m writing this in Wellington, where November is notoriously windy and disappointing) and many of us are dreaming about holidays ahead.

November 25, 2022

Emily Webber takes over her mum’s kitchen with the confidence of a young woman who has worked at the bench many times before.

Today the Hutt Valley Year Six student is having fun in the holidays making guacamole and, like Jamie Oliver or Nadia Lim – the television chefs she loves, she is more than happy with an audience. “Tonight, I will make a vegetable dinner,” she says.

Emily, 11, has two YouTube channels – ‘Chef Emily NZ’ and ‘How to Emily NZ’ – filmed and edited by Susan Webber, her mother.

November 25, 2022

The word ‘jolt’ can mean shocking someone or something into change. And change is something that drives Christchurch-based dance company Jolt.

“We need to challenge this whole deficit view of disability,” says Artistic Director Lyn Cotton. “We need to see people as individuals with their own unique way of moving and thinking.”

Jolt is an inclusive dance company made up of people with intellectual disabilities. It was founded by Lyn in 2001.

November 25, 2022

Rochelle Waters and Joel Forman are part of Move, a programme run by Christchurch-based dance company Jolt.

Rochelle and Joel teach regular classes and workshops and are the presenters of Jolt’s Zoom sessions on IHC Media at 11am on Wednesdays.

November 25, 2022

The most popular day of the week at the IHC Opportunity Shop in Pukekohe is Thursday – the day when you can ‘fill a basket for $10’.

But recently a Tuesday topped the Thursday crowd. That was when the shop filled up after COVID mask restrictions were lifted, says IHC Retail Assistant Kathleen Felix.

November 25, 2022

After spending most of this year looking for work, Gabe Beyrer found it, right on his doorstep in his favourite café.

Every Sunday for as long as he can remember Gabe has had lunch after church on Sundays at Terra Viva Café with his mum, Jenny. Now he works there too.

November 25, 2022

Sarah Dann-Hoare is out to convince employers that young disabled people make great employees.

She has set up a training café to give young people a start in the workforce. Flourish Café opened in Takapuna in August – an initiative by Project Employ with support from the IHC Foundation.

November 25, 2022

Taimahi Trust has come a long way from a coffee cart with four guys on the side of the road to a group of micro-enterprises providing great food and eco-products to Whangārei and beyond.

Taimahi still operates its mobile coffee cart but has added a drive-thru hāngī every Friday night in Whangārei. Its retail store provides affordable fresh fruit and vegetables in partnership with the

November 25, 2022

The winning moment for Dunedin photographer Callum Flett came on a gloomy day in the middle of the pandemic. The Dunedin Railway Station was a good place to find shelter. It was a good place to find inspiration too.

The photograph Callum took from the station platform won him first prize of $2500 in the IHC ‘Capture the Moment’ competition.

November 25, 2022

Not everyone could handle it, knowing that people were depending on you to raise $14 million in a year. But IHC’s National Manager of Fundraising Greg Millar likes having a target. “It’s always somewhat challenging,” he says.

Last year 35,500 IHC donors gave $14.2 million – $1.8 million more than in the previous year.

November 25, 2022

The last time we had comprehensive information on the health of New Zealanders with intellectual disabilities was a Ministry of Health report in 2011.

That is about to change. After hearing there was no plan to update the Health Indicators for New Zealanders with Intellectual Disability report, IHC has commissioned a research team to do the job.