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Ko ngā motu o Shetland te tūrangawaewae o ōku tūpuna

The Shetland Islands are where my ancestors stood.

Heoi i whakatangata au ki Aotearoa

However, I became the person I am in Aotearoa/NZ.

Kua whai pakiaka tōku whānau ki Te Upoko-o-te-ika’ 

My family have planted roots in the Wellington region.

Ko Raukawa moana tōku wai ora

and the waters of the Cook Strait sustain me.

Tokowhitu āku mokopuna. He kite ahau i te nuinga o rātou ia rā.

I have seven grandchildren. I see most of them everyday. 

From 1980 I worked as a teacher then a youth worker leading Te Ora Hou in Porirua for fifteen years. Over that time our work included: developing Porirua Alt School, an alternative education programme which continues today as Praxis Education Kenepuru. For much of that time my partner Anthea and I also shared our home and provided foster care for young people from the local community. 

Since 2000, I have developed Praxis, a private tertiary education provider which specialises in training youth workers throughout the country. I still teach regularly on the Praxis course and work across a range of other organisations to develop and deliver workshops and training for people who work with young people. I have published a number of books and articles around the theme of youth development and am currently completing doctoral study through Victoria University in Wellington, the focus of my research is how young people experience change through their involvement in alternative education. 

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