Apart from being an eternal traveller and a keen horse rider, Heike's great passion in life is water. Kei te ora te wai, kei te ora te whenua, kei te ora te tangata - if the water is healthy, the land and the people will be nourished. This vision, chosen by the Manawatū River Leaders’ Forum (MRLF), guides her in her daily actions as an individual, a community member and a business person. She loves challenging what is, changing perspectives, envisioning what could be – and last but not least, contributing to make it happen by being an active member of ENM, MRLF, Te Kāuru, the Te Apiti Manawatū Gorge Project as well as EIANZ.
Stewart has been involved in Local and National environment focused action since 1991. As a local volunteer and activist in Education, Green Politics, Preserving Open Spaces, Library, Business and Professional Womens Group, Harvest Festival, PNCC working parties advising on process, to mention a few. Though law has been her main employed life interest, the natural environment is her passion. She says that we cannot leave the responsibility to preserve and maintain our natural environment and resources to Local Authorities and scientists. The Environment Network Manawatu now having 52 member groups is testament to growing urgency as a result of climate change and general awareness of our individual responsibility. Having lived in the Manawatu for 46 years she appreciates the enormous contribution that the local Community Sector makes. Active Environmentalism she says is a gift, not only to personal wellbeing but to future generations which will benefit in a tangible way from good people who actively care.
Alastair has a wide range of Environmental, Conservation and Wildlife interests, all resulting from his childhood growing up on a bush property in Wellington. After completing his degree at Massey University in Environmental Science, Alastair worked in Ranger and Technical Freshwater roles with the Department of Conservation, Regional Council Environmental Planning. He has been Regional Co-ordinator Manawatu–Whanganui for NZ Landcare Trust for the past four years. Alastair is Chairperson of the Manawatu Estuary Management Team, which looks after the internationally significant Manawatu Estuary Ramsar Site, a Trustee of Wildlife Foxton Trust and also is a board member of the Palmerston North City Environmental Trust. When Alastair is not working, he spends his time with his wife and young family whilst juggling his hobbies; creation of a self sufficient small holding, the breeding and captive management of New Zealand native geckos, the breeding of exotic waterfowl, poultry and game birds plus a touch of tramping and hunting.
Sally is passionate about nature and the great outdoors, which can be traced back to childhood spent helping to grow vegetables, enjoying the bush, tramping and spending time on the upper reaches of rivers while her father went fishing. Living sustainably has also been a long-term priority. She has been a long time member of Forest & Bird, and coordinator of a bush restoration project in the Rangitikei. Her formal education includes completing a BA in social sciences and a post graduate diploma in International Studies (environmental endorsement). Previous work experience includes work in the health and disability sector and at the PN City Library (customer service role). Sally has worked as environmental coordinator for eight years, and has a great overview of the local environmental sector and of what ENM does. She particularly enjoys connecting people who may be able to work together, and is the staff member responsible for the development of the Biodiversity Cluster, a sub-network of biodiversity groups, helping to build capacity in that area.
Madz comes to ENM after a number of years immersed in family life. While raising her five children, she has been active in helping to organise and facilitate activities and communication channels for the local home school community. She is the founder and coordinator Community Fruit Harvest Manawatu, and was instrumental in helping to establish the Manawatu Urban Foraging online community. Madz is also a playing member of the community music group, Palmerston North Brass. In her down time, she loves to get outside into her garden where she has a lot of old fruit trees to reinvigorate and lawns to turn into vegetable gardens amongst an overgrown park of tree and flower gardens.
I was born and raised in New Zealand, and gained a Masters degree in Ecology at Victoria University of Wellington in 1997. My university divided it into two separate subjects, plant ecology and animal ecology, and humans were mostly not considered as part of the ecosystem. I took cloth shopping bags to the supermarket, to the puzzlement of checkout staff and other customers, and rode my bicycle to work and to the shops; this was very unusual in those days. To me, the solution to our ecological problems lies, not in yet more scientific or technological advances, nor in individual survivalism, but in radically changing our values and the structure of our society to fit sustainably into the planet’s ecosystems. ENM is in the vanguard of this change, and I'm pleased to have worked for the organization for a few years now, first as a volunteer, and now as part-time paid Communication Coordinator.