Our Testimonials

Lupe Soapi

2015 JB Graduate Puke High

Having come through The Rising Foundation programme in high school in year 11 to Year 13 I was very fortunate. I was exposed to a new way of thinking where I gained a better understanding of myself and also others. Becoming a Prefect in Year 13, I was encouraged to make the most of my opportunities in life and became a more confident leader through the many things I experienced.

Feleti Lotulelei

Former Employment Pathways Manager

TRF has opened so many more doors for me along my life journey, developing me with skills for being Head Boy at Papakura High School; becoming a JB Grad at TRF and helping at school and camps; a TRF Trustee privately funding my tertiary studies for three years; to me today, giving back all I can as a full time staff member of TRF.  I am grateful for every opportunity that TRF has given me and I, too, look forward to assisting those in their journeys with us.

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Kaitlyn Murray

2014 JB Graduate Puke High

Since joining I have learnt a lot about both myself and the people around me. I have learnt how to be more confident and also how to be a leader. TRF has taught me to think on the spot and to make decisions quickly while taking into consideration those around me and what’s best for them as well as me. I have had the opportunity to meet so many people who all have their own story which has allowed me to learn more. I have had the opportunity to grow individually and as part of a group as well as watch others around me do the same.

Ariana Tupoutoa

2014 JB Graduate Papakura High

I have been in the Rising Foundation for 5 years. I started in 2010. For myself, this journey has been the most extreme journey ever and has built up a lot of self-identity. I remember my very first meeting I was absolutely shy and joining this group was very nerve racking. When I first joined up I didn’t understand the four pillars that well. My journey was very up and down like a rollercoaster. The camps I did go on were lifetime opportunities and by having that opportunity, I felt very fortunate to get that chance. I remember the first camp I went on was in the city. There we did activities like an amazing race. This camp was my first taste of TRF and it was a quite amazing first impression. There I developed skills of communication and not being shy. Just being open minded. This camp put the pillar ‘collaboration’ in place. It felt weird at first to interact with people I never knew but I got over it and just pushed through. My next camp were excursions from school this would have been the camp that impacted me the most. For me, my biggest fear is heights and this was the ultimate camp that helped me to overcome it. One of the main activities was to bungy jump of the harbour bridge. I was very afraid, so afraid I cried before we got there. But I knew if I hadn’t had done it that it would’ve been a big regret. So I just picked myself up and thought yes I am going to bungy jump and I did it. That was probably the most proud moment that I have ever had.  The Rising Foundation has given me a chance to put my pieces to my puzzle and finally reveal my true identity. I am glad I have been a part of this group because now that I have nearly graduated I can help and also be part of other people’s journey.

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Billie Paterson

Programme Coordinator

I started my journey with the rising just over two years ago. The Rising Foundation has grown and nurtured me into the person I am today. My perspective of the rising when I first joined was that I was chosen to be in a leadership programme. I had soon learnt that from experiencing my first camp, there was much more to it. over these past two years I have been opened to a newer and positive outlook on life that has allowed me to discover who I truly am. From having self confidence in myself to being tested in few of the hardest tests I have experienced, I have been able to place our key values of the rising and apply them into my life, which has also allowed to be imprinted into my family as well. all of what I have learnt on my journey has developed me to be open minded to everything. The one thing I believe has really changed me from my first camp is my attitude . I am so thankful to have been given this opportunity and allowing me to help guide others starting and developing through their own journey as well. It is such an honour to be part of their learning as I am constantly learning from the other students as well. The rising has prepared me for my years ahead and I am so grateful to continue my journey next year studying social work and working for the rising foundation in the core team. TRF 4 LYF!

People of TRF 

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"What I love about The Rising Foundation is being able to learn 

different aspects of what we should expect when we hit 'reality' or enter the real world. What I have learnt during my time in TRF is the amount of confidence I have gained within myself, and just being able to have the confidence in socialising with new peers and being able to speak my mind confidently. The Rising Foundation has supported me in many positive ways. It has supported me in many positive ways. It has supported me mentally, physically, spiritually, socially and financially." 

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"I love the feeling of being safe around other people in The Rising and having a coordinator who never folds on us. I have learnt many things during my time with TRF, but my favourite thing I have learnt is how to step out of my body and really think of the situation I am in to understand it better and think about my next choice. TRF has supported me by giving my different opportunities and providing me with different experiences to help me grow as an  individual."

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" I love the vibes at TRF and the fact that we get to meet more people. I also like learning about life lessons. I love everything, NO CAP! Through The Rising Foundation I have learnt about making good choices and knowing that every choice has a consequence. Experiences in TRF that have helped me grow have been getting involved with others even if you have just met them and getting to know them better." 

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" I love how accepting everyone is. I love how much effort the coordinators and adults put into helping us students achieve our goals both short term and long. I aslo love the fact all of the schools are able to merge together and create strong bonds during camps, excursions and any type of get-togethers. They have supported my in helping me stay focussed and well driven on my goals. TRF has also supported me through the trials and tribulations I face; they are able to relate to me and give me advice on how to slowly work through them. I have learnt more about myslef and who I am personally. I know that in this world I am not alone and always have brothers and sisters to lean on

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"TRF encourages people to come out of their comfort zone. I have learnt how to communicate with others. The Rising helped me become more confident in myself. I learned to not judge people in any way. Everything they taught me has changed the way I see the world. TRF has helped me be a better person and to make good choices. TRF also taught me to be the person I am togay and just to be myself. TRF has supported me to achieve, they encourage me alot. TRF is like my second family."