Te Kūiti wahine creates pathways for teachers and tamariki
It’s been a year of adventure for Kelly Tregoweth, who recently moved from the larger inland city Hamilton to the small farming town Te Kūiti. Officially taking up the Centre Manager role at Te Pukeiti Early Childhood Centre, Kelly has returned to her passion to growing our people and our tamariki.
Born and raised within the Maniapoto boundaries in Te Kūiti, Kelly’s parents were, and continue to be, very dedicated members of their community and marae, Oparure. Her early years revolved around her whānau and a childhood that saw many days at the marae with her grandmother. Childhood memories combined with a strong sense of identity, passion, determination and people uniting to achieve a shared purpose, it’s not a supriseto see Kelly return to Te Nehenehenui with her expertise to create pathways for the people of her hometown.
Having a strong grounding and connection to Oparure, Ngāti Kinohaku, Kelly attended Te Kūiti Primary and High School where the natural sportswoman excelled at Netball and various leadership management roles. She says her experience as House Captain in 6th Form (Year 12) and representing Maniapoto Reps Netball encouraged her to continue her extracurricular activities and managerial skills. To that end, Kelly immediately found work across fields such as food, retail and labor work which saw her hold many positions that placed her at the managerial level.
Spending time away in Australia, Kelly was quick to realise that her new environment could never replace home, thus deciding to make the permanent move back to Aotearoa where she furthered her tertiary studies in Tourism Management and completed a Bachelor Degree in ECE at Wintecs Hamilton campus. “I worked four days a week, I was a single mum, and studied one day a week. I always had management roles. I was managing a restaurant and I did that until I decided to shift my focus to day care as a reliever,” says Kelly.
It wasn’t without luck, Kelly spent her first day relieving at one centre and her next day she went to another, where she ended up spending 8 years building her experience, gaining qualification and taking her familiar role as manager. The mother of three boys, has taken every opportunity to make the most of her life at home and afar. Kelly says having managers who were always supportive of her instilled a resolve to continue to do the same for teachers and tamariki.
Kelly is passionate about encouraging rangatahi to know who they are and hope to make her tamariki proud. “To support people through study and watch them succeed and become managers in their own right, giving them the tools is what makes me proud.”
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