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WELLfed Tutors/Kaimahi

WELLfed cooking classes are run by a team of local tutors, 90% of whom are Graduates of the WELLfed programme who have gone on to support others to learn.

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Tutor Manager

Maxine grew up in Ireland as part of a large family where she learned how to cook in her mother's kitchen. In the late 90s, she moved to Porirua, New Zealand, where she has worked in the hospitality, travel, and education industries. While raising her family, she also dedicated her time as a volunteer at a local Playcentre and the fruit and veggie coop in Waitangirua. Maxine has known Becs and Kim for many years and was drawn to the concept of WELLfed. She joined the organization as a volunteer tutor very early on and now leads the WELLfed tutor team while also organizing the parenting courses offered by the organization. Along with her passion for food, travel, and people, Maxine is deeply interested in building resilience and life skills for future generations.



Assistant Tutor Manager

Merica is the Assistant Tutor Manager at WELLfed and team leader of the WELLfed Youth Programme. She started as a learner at WELLfed and was then a volunteer before becoming a staff member. She is a mum of three children and has whāngai many children.  Before her time at WELLfed Merica attended He Huarahi - School for teenage parents. She is an active volunteer in the community and in 2023 won a Porirua City Council Award for services to the community. She is part of the Mana Wāhine programme and is a key connector within the Porirua community.

Merica loves connecting people with their roots and believes that food is a connector in life.   Merica was raised in Porirua and is part of a large family.  Merica’s iwi affiliations are Ngā Puhi, Te Rarawa, Ngati Ruanui Ngaruahinerangi and Wanganui.




Donna is a tutor at WELLfed. She has been involved with WELLfed for four years, having started as a learner, progressing to become a volunteer and then ultimately joining WELLfed as a member of staff. Donna is currently working as a health research assistant as part of an evaluation project through Te Herenga Waka-Victoria University of Wellington. Her passion is her family. Donna has two children, has whāngai many children and she is also raising her mokopuna. She volunteers at the boxing academy and at the local marae supporting young people and the wider community. She is part of the Mana Wāhine programme and is keen on fitness and taking on new challenges. Donna was born in Wellington and raised in Gisborne. Her iwi are Ngāti Porou and Tūhoe.




Crystal is a tutor at WELLfed, having started her WELLfed journey as a learner. She has a daughter and is an active member of her wider family. Crystal plays Softball for the Porirua Workingman’s Club. She comes from a long line of wāhine toa, who have instilled in her a passion for kai and awhi. She was born and raised in Porirua and attended Turakina Māori Girls’ College. Her iwi connections are Te Whānau-ā-Apanui and Ngāti Kahungungu ki Wairoa




Lofi is a tutor at WELLfed, having started her WELLfed journey as a learner in 2022. She is a mum of three children and works hard in her family and community. Lofi is an advocate for people. She is a member of the Mana Wāhine programme and believes in assisting people to make a positive change in their lives. Lofi was born in Samoa and came to Porirua when she was 9 years old.




Christina, known by Tina is married with 2 children. She was born and raised in Wellington and describes herself as a “fruit salad” being Tongan, Scottish and Irish. She is a Tutor, and a proud member of the team at WELLfed Porirua. Through WELLfed Tina has passed her full drivers licence and achieved certificates in mini first aid, parenting and food safety. Outside of WELLfed Tina is Vice President for Malia Tupou Arts and Culture Inc, and an active Member of Makatu'unga he ofa Tongan Community.




Maggie was born and raised in the small town of Manakau between Ōtaki and Levin. She is a Mum of 4 children and a qualified hairdresser. Maggie attended WELLfed as a learner in 2020, subsequently became a volunteer and then went on to join the staff as a Tutor. Maggie is of Māori decent with connections to Ngāti Raukawa and Ngāti Wehiwehi. Through WELLfed, Maggie gained her restricted and ultimately full drivers licence after 15 years of driving on her learner plates. She has also achieved a certificate in food safety and completed the train the trainer course.



Volunteer Tutor

Kathy initially connected with WELLfed back in 2019.  Through her work as a GP and Chair of Pacific Health she was instrumental in providing much needed space to host WELLfed's initial evening classes.  Born in Whanganui Kathy has lived in Porirua for over 30 years and many of her whanau live in the greater Wellington region.  Now retired, Kathy not only enjoys cooking and sharing her passion with the learners but she brings a wealth of health navigation experience to her role as a tutor. 

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