Volunteering in the Pacific: Central Library talk 22nd September

VSA talk poster PNGAre you interested in hearing the exciting stories of volunteering overseas? Do you have skills and are willing to make a change to a country in the Pacific? Come along to the VSA talk “Jandals as work boots, sports shoes as formal attire” at the Central Library on 22nd of September, 2016 at 6:00pm on the ground floor and hear the experiences of former volunteer Max Honey.

Max undertook a Volunteer Service Abroad assignment in 2013 as a youth worker in Santo, Vanuatu. Come and join Max as he talks about the heat, the fun and most of all the people who inspired him to return to New Zealand to become a teacher.



Central Library talk: volunteering in the Pacific with VSA

Come along to the VSA talk at the Central Library on 19th of August at 5:30pm on the ground floor. Laurie Williams is keen to share his experience of volunteering with VSA in the Pacific and making a change to the local community.


VSA (Volunteer Services Abroad|Te Tūao Tāwāhi) is New Zealand’s largest and most experienced volunteering agency working in international development. Kiwi volunteers share skills with people in the wider Pacific to help them build a better future for themselves and their children. Their work covers wide area include agriculture, law, education, health, public sanitation, management, business development, sports development and communications.

1VSA speaker Laurie Williams:
Before volunteering for VSA, Laurie worked in both primary and secondary education as a school principal in both New Zealand and Tonga. He also worked as an education consultant in both the Middle East and Tonga.  Laurie initially worked with VSA on a School Leadership Project with three head teachers in the Solomon Islands. He helped them to develop their role as school leaders. He was subsequently assigned to King George VI National Secondary School, as Senior Adviser, to work with the senior management team to develop, implement and improve good school practices. In 2012, the Ministry of Education, Human Resources and Development offered him the opportunity to lead the school as acting Principal.  This was followed by a series of short term assignments with the Ministry to strengthen the governance of their two secondary schools.


“Nui Nui Rangatira”: Dr George Evans with author Helen Riddiford

2015 is a year of many anniversaries.

But this week there is a wonderful opportunity to upgrade your knowledge of Wellington history with the story of the arrival of the first New Zealand Company settlers and their impact upon tangata whenua – a huge change in the structure of life at Te Whanganui-a-Tara, 1840.

Today at 1 pm, Helen Riddiford will outline her story of the coming together of these two cultures as portrayed through her recently published book: A Blighted fame : George S. Evans, 1802-1868. (VUP, 2015)

Helen’s presentation:

index ‘Nui Nui Rangatira’: Dr George Evans, his role in the New Zealand Company and his Relationship with Māori”

Colonial founder ; the story of Hiakai and the creation of te reo Māori grammar book (London, 1837-38); accomplished speaker of the language; the unfolding legend of Ruhia Porutu, Thomas McKenzie & Dr Evans’ partially-built house (1840) ; defender of Māori under British law (1841) ; and other events.

In the recounting the story of George Evans, we discover unfolding snippets of Māori interaction and encounters with a new way of life amongst the New Zealand Company settlers. 2015 is also the 150 year anniversary of Wellington as the capital city of New Zealand This is a fine chance to hear and understand acoming together of two cultures and thebackground stories to the making of Wellington city.

Nau mai, haere mai ki tō tatou whare
Wellington City, Central Library
Friday 17 April, Ground Floor, 1 pm

History for Lunch today with Redmer Yska: Katherine Mansfield in the time of cholera in Wellington

Wellington Harbour by Barraud tiny

On Wednesdays from 12.30-1.30pm during the month of August, the Central Library is hosting a series of history talks covering the social, urban and Māori history of Wellington.

The first talk today, Wednesday 7 August, will be with notable Wellington historian Redmer Yska, and the topic is: The Flight to South Karori: How Katherine Mansfield’s family coped with life and death in the time of cholera (1890-93)

Redmer will uncover the extraordinary story of Wellington’s cholera epidemic and the associated flight of the Beauchamp family out of the city, along with many other members of Wellington’s middle-class. The story also covers the political battles that waged between influential forces as the city struggled to gain the means to rectify the situation. Redmer also wrote about this topic in the Dominion Post recently.

Come along — all welcome!