Te Arawa Workforce Hub

Nau mai, haere mai, welcome to the Te Arawa Workforce Hub, a space where our iwi relationship coordinators can help you and your whānau seek out mahi, develop new skills or access benefit entitlements.

Established post-lockdown after our whānau survey identified a need for this service in our rohe, the Te Arawa Workforce Hub collaborated with the Ministry of Social Development (MSD) and the Lakes District Health Board (DHB) to form a unique partnership to support Te Arawa whānau who have been impacted by COVID-19.

Based at the Te Arawa Lakes Trust office in Rotorua, our team provides a friendly face-to-face kōrero and looks at the four dimensions of your whānau hauora: Taha Tinana/physical well-being, Taha Hinengaro/mental and emotional well-being, Taha Whānau/social well-being and Taha Wairua/spiritual well-being. By looking at your whānau as a whole, we can identify what you need and work through any challenges you may be faced with.

Our kaupapa is based on providing a supportive and non-judgemental service with our kete of knowledge. We understand that mahi is a journey, one that we can walk alongside you with from start to finish.

To kōrero with us, use the below booking system to make an appointment with one of our team. To speed the process up, please fill in the assessment form prior to booking a consultation.

Laurie Watt – Iwi Relationship Co-ordinator

Laurie Watt says being able to serve Te Arawa whānau, walking alongside them to help them achieve their dreams, goals and aspirations in the most seamless way possible is what drives her in her mahi.

Her current role sees her helping whānau who have lost mahi due to COVID-19  – whether that’s assisting them back into the workforce, supporting them to develop new skills or access benefit entitlements. Essentially, it is walking alongside whānau to work through any challenges they may be faced with.

This role builds on the past 20 years where she has been serving whānau in health, hapū whānau and whānau ora roles.

Laurie (Ngāti Whakaue) encourages whānau out there who need support to get in contact, so they don’t have to walk alone.


Bub Hohepa – Iwi Relationship Co-ordinator

Bub Hohepa has the important role of working with Te Arawa whānau who have lost their mahi due to COVID. For Bub, this means building relationships and networks with both internal and external providers, as well as collaborating with Ministry of Social Development around mahi opportunities.

Bub (Te Arawa/Mataatua) says as well as knowledge of products and services from MSD, and a Diploma in Customer Service & Communications, it’s her personal attributes such as whanaungatanga and hononga that are her strengths.

She also holds Diplomas in Business and Office Administration, Indigenous Studies and Adult Teaching, as well as a Level 7 Security Diploma.

Outside of work, Bub is passionate about meeting new people and enjoying life with her whānau and friends but it is hanging out with her seven mokopuna that keeps her mauri alive.


Ricki-Leigh Halsall – Iwi Relationship Co-ordinator

With a background in customer service facing roles, Ricki-Leigh (Ngāi Tūhoe) is the epitome of easy going and relates well with people from all walks of life.

As a newly appointed Iwi Relationship Co-ordinator, Ricki-Leigh is passionate about helping those who have lost mahi due to COVID-19. The focus of her role is to assist whānau navigate the myriad of help available through community service agencies to find a new path through study, training or employment.

Ricki-Leigh is solutions-focused and strives to be innovative in her approach to helping others overcome challenges, empowering people to be the best version of themselves they can be.

A self-confessed DIY junkie, Ricki-Leigh loves upcycling furniture, sports, exercising and spending time with her whānau.