About Us

‘Our tamariki are our future’ so they say but we want to make sure that our tamariki have the best possible future.

Inspiring rangatahi

At Partners Porirua, we want to ensure the rangatahi in our communities have a positive outlook on life in particular, their working life.

By bringing role models from business and community together and connecting them with rangatahi we are helping to inspire them about their future and raising their awareness of the wonderful opportunities that lie ahead.

For some students this is the only opportunity they have to learn about the working world before they leave school.

What we do

We connect businesses, community and individuals to rangatahi in our community who are looking for opportunities to explore what the world has to offer and what they can give in return.

We do this through our education programmes, which place business mentors into schools to share knowledge; and we provide opportunities for rangatahi to enter the workforce through JOBfest, our Youth Service and through the Youth 2 Work movement activity with businesses who are committed to growing local talent.


Ā mātou whānau i te mahi

Our staff, trustees and youth representatives are committed to helping rangatahi develop their talents and achieve every success they want.

Our Staff

Our staff work alongside our rangatahi to develop their talents and achieve success by providing opportunities for them to grow through education and training. The team comprises qualified and experienced youth coaches, registered teachers and managers for operations and workforce development.

Michelle Robinson

Executive Director, Partners Porirua

Michelle has been active in supporting rangatahi in Porirua since the formation of Partners Porirua in January 2000. Partners Porirua’s mission is ‘developing youth for the working world’ and as executive director, she was the driving force behind setting up the Porirua Youth 2 Work Movement in 2015. Her key role is building strong relationships with stakeholders to help Partners Porirua grow.

Michelle lives by the beautiful Pauatahanui inlet and in her spare time likes being outdoors, walking and gardening.

e: michelle@partnersporirua.org.nz
m:  027 286 1919

Arlyta Huriwai

Operations and Service Support Manager

Prior to joining Partners Porirua, Arlyta gained a wealth of experience in both the corporate and community sectors supporting many young job seekers into work. Her efficient manner along with a sense of humour helps keep the busy team on track.

Arlyta enjoys keeping up with her four tamariki and eight mokopuna. Her other favourite pastimes are raranga harakeke (flax weaving), making jewellery and photography.

Te Whanau a Hinetapora, Ngāti Porou   

e: arlyta@partnersporirua.org.nz
t: 04 237 1099

Salā Henry Samia

Programmes Manager

Henry is Project Lead at Partners Porirua and has been with the organisation since 2008.    Henry adds value to the team with wide-ranging experience working in both the education and government sector.

Born and bred in Porirua, Henry is an active member of the community through church and networking groups.

Henry is passionate about being part of the journey of helping Porirua youth realise their potential.

e: henry@partnersporirua.org.nz
m: 027 229 9208

John Lafaele

Career Pathways & Community Relations Lead

John is our Education and Training advisor who has supported many of our young Porirua residents with their skills and development pathways. John has a Social Work and Education background with life-skills that include living and working overseas.

John who is of Samoan decent, is married with three children and is well connected to our community, schools and religious circles. These relationships and connections enable John to reach out and engage with our youth and their fanau in many different spaces in an effort to help benefit young lives.

e: John@partnersporirua.org.nz
m: 027 539 0241

David Lafaele

Employment Advisor

David has a background working with all ages from 16 – 65, most recently working as a Pacific Employment & Education advisor.

He is passionate about helping pacific people to recognize and reach their potential and supporting them to identify better avenues for their future, either through education or employment.

Having lived here for most of his life, David considers his current neighbourhood Cannons Creek, where he lives with his wife and four children, to be the most beautiful place in Porirua. In his spare time, David loves playing sport and spending time with his friends and family and going to church on Sundays.

e: David@partnersporirua.org.nz
m: 027 539 0240

Jacqui Edwards

Workforce Development Manager

Jacqui is focused on working with businesses and rangatahi to ensure they benefit from being involved with the Porirua Youth 2 Work Movement.

One of her main focuses is CAREERfest, where she gets employers and work-ready rangatahi together to “talk about work opportunities and expectations”.

Jacqui spends her time outside of work attending the Hosanna Baptist Church in Cannons Creek and encouraging her kids’ academic achievements, sport and other activities.

Te Ātiawa

e: jacqui@partnersporirua.org.nz
m: 021 0260 8404

Jewelz Kilino

Youth Service Support and Drive 4 Life Coordinator

Jewelz has a wealth of experience as a Youth Service coach, a driving mentor, a facilitator for licence and budgeting programmes and a youth advocate.

Born and bred in Palmerston North, Jewelz now calls Porirua home. She loves spending time with her son, catching up with family and is involved in the Tokelauan community in Porirua.

e: jewelz@partnersporirua.org.nz
m: 027 250 1902

Dave Roche

Youth Projects & Coach

Dave has a background working with children and teenagers, most recently working as a teacher aide and sports coordinator/coach.

He is passionate about helping young people to recognize and reach their potential and especially loves using sport, recreation and team based activities to achieve this.

Dave has lived in Porirua for most of his life and currently lives in the beautiful Titahi Bay with his wife. In his spare time, Dave loves surfing, playing sport and spending time with his friends and whanau.

e: Dave.Roche@partnersporirua.org.nz
m: 027 242 5959

Nani Kirk

Youth Coach & Service Support

Nani’s passion for bridging gaps and amplifying the voices and needs of rangatahi comes from 7yrs experience being a kōhanga reo educator. Nani is now in her final year of completing a Bachelor of Youth Development. Her first introduction to Partners Porirua was through placement for her studies.

 Whānau is super important to Nani. She enjoys going to church, singing, Kapa Haka & Cook Island Ura, as well as reading and travelling. One of her biggest flex is that she is Porirua born and raised.

Ngāti Pikiao, Ngāti Whakaue, Manihiki, Pukapuka, Rarotonga

e: nani@partnersporirua.org.nz
m:  027 268 5575

Our Youth Voice

Our young employees and youth representatives ensure that we have a strong youth voice guiding what we do and keeping us true to our organisation’s core values.

Allyson tone

 Administration Assistant

Ally joined the team to help with the establishment of youth friendly communication channels and incorporating a youth viewpoint into the delivery of Youth One Stop Shop (YOSS) initiatives. She also provides administration support across several of our services.

Ally enjoys working with the rangatahi of Porirua and is keen to support them in anyway she can.

Ally’s hobbies are playing sports, spending time with family and eating sushi.


Ruby Sei

Youth Engagement & Service Support

Currently working part-time at Partners Porirua, Ruby attends Victoria University where she is studying towards a Bachelor of Arts majoring in Health Psychology and Pacific Studies. 

Raised in Porirua, being involved in community initiatives, groups and her local church is important to her, “I am passionate about young people and our contribution to the future.”  Ruby’s favourite pastimes are art, dance and sports.

Te Ātiawa, Taranaki


Payton Mikara

Administration & Service Support

Payton completed a placement with Partners Porirua and now that she has completed her Bachelor of Social Work degree, we are glad to welcome her back as an employee.

Born and bred in Porirua, and brought up to embrace the concept of serving your community. Payton actively takes part in community events, church and work life.

In her downtime, she enjoys spending time with her friends and family, going to concerts and festivals and keeping active.

Ngāti Kahungunu


Justino Mariri

Youth Board Representative

Our Trustees

Our trustees bring educational knowledge, community understanding, business and professional experience and insights and are committed to making a positive social contribution to Porirua youth.

They have a clear focus on the organisation’s purpose and the boundaries within which they should operate. Each year, youth representatives join the trustees to ensure that a youth voice is heard in alignment with the organisation’s core values.

Kaye Brunton

Primary School Representative
Principal, Ngāti Toa School

Siuai Fiso

Pacific business representative
Career background: Award winning business owner of outsource contact centre

John Topp

Secondary school representative
Deputy Principal, Porirua College

Maureen Gillon

Social and civic representative
Career background: Local government and health

Riann Umaga-Marshall

Career background: Business, accounting and finance

Ngai te Rangi

Ranei Wineera-Parai

NgātiToa Rangatira representative
Career background: Business, law and health

Estelle Fiso-Waters

Career Background: Business and Human Resource 


Magele Maria Uluilelata

Pacific and Community Representative
Career Background: Chief Advisor Pacific at Ohu Mahi Workforce Development Council