Here is our current whānau:
Here is our current whānau:
Jennifer joined YouthLaw as the General Manager in September 2018 after serving on YouthLaw’s Board for several years. She is a passionate advocate for children and young people and has worked in child protection, Māori legal issues, refugee law and general litigation. As well as working at YouthLaw, Jennifer is doing a Masters in Social and Community Leadership and sits on the management committee of Child Poverty Action Group and the steering group of Action for Children and Youth Aotearoa. When she isn’t lawyering or studying she loves to spend time making art and listening to others making great music.
After graduating from Waikato University, Manawa joined YouthLaw as a graduate solicitor in 2010. Manawa enjoys the variety of cases that she is able to work with at YouthLaw and has cultivated particular interests in family and criminal law. When she is not at work, Manawa enjoys travelling, cooking or just watching a movie or two. If Manawa was a shoe, she would be a sneaker, so she could travel the world in comfort.
Velda immigrated to NZ from Hong Kong at a young age and can never answer the question of whether she likes NZ or HK more because they’re so different yet both such fantastic gems in their own way. Prior to working at YouthLaw, Velda volunteered here whilst attending University, and loved how you know that you’re assisting a physical person rather than just a name on a piece of paper. Velda is the fix-it person in the office who attempts to fix everything from the photocopier to plants. She has an addiction to Korean entertainment and frequents the noraebang (Korean karaoke) to sing the latest Korean pop.
Having worked in the community sector for 14 years, Sarah has an extensive knowledge and experience in the education field. She is passionate about sharing knowledge and empowering the youth she works with to fulfil their individual potential. With a friendly approach, Sarah is keen to make Youth law and their rights known and accessible across the board. Sarah’s love for art and laughter filters through every aspect of her life, always equipped with a bad joke or two.
Sarah joined YouthLaw in January 2019 – a decision that she has celebrated every day since. Her prior work alongside people who have disabilities has made her a staunch advocate for equal opportunities and rights. Volunteering is something Sarah is very passionate about, having had many volunteer roles herself (including as a phone counsellor, a fundraiser and a wildlife rehabber). Sarah studied psychology initially and then management. In her spare time she is usually chilling with her lorikeets, walking the dogs or singing along to her new favourite album.
Sui is a New Zealand born Samoan raised in South Auckland. She has dedicated herself to the youth sector for almost 10 years now and decided to take a faith step into YouthLaw to see how she could ‘level up’ in her career pathway and to see how she could be more effective for rangatahi. Sui believes relationships are essential for a young person and thinks it’s great that she gets to do a lot of relationship building through her role.
Sui loves spending time with her family and friends, especially her nephews and nieces. She is an event stylist on the side, and she loves to eat, laugh, and op-shop!
Sarah joined YouthLaw as a Solicitor in early 2019. Sarah has been passionate about community law since she volunteered for the Auckland Community Law Centre. She enjoys community law because she is able to help people achieve solutions for themselves, and every day is different. Sarah is originally from a small village called Tinui in the mighty Wairarapa, but has lived in Auckland for eight years. Sarah has previously worked for the Auckland University Student Association as Welfare Vice-President and Auckland Council as a Democracy Advisor for the Manurewa Local Board.
John joined YouthLaw as a voluntary legal assistant in 2017 after hearing about the amazing work that the organisation does through some friends. He loved the experience and has since joined YouthLaw as a Law Clerk. He also loves the academic side of law and is currently doing a Bachelor of Laws (Hons). He’s passionate about music, and when he’s not doing anything law related, you’d usually find him playing the bass guitar or the drums.
Robert joined the team at YouthLaw as a law clerk after helping out as legal volunteer in 2018. He took up the position as he found the work at YouthLaw very rewarding, and supporting disadvantaged groups like young people was his dream when beginning his law degree. Robert is of South Korean, NZ Maori and NZ European descent, and is in his final year of a LLB at AUT. In his spare time, you will probably find him cooking, reading, or listening to country music.
Hiruni joined YouthLaw as a volunteer legal assistant in 2017 because of her interest in working in the non-profit legal sector. She took up the Administration Assistant role in late 2017 where she assists with collating data for reporting and helps with organising the volunteer intakes. However, she continues to volunteer as well, because of her passion for helping young people and the community. Hiruni is of Sri Lankan origin and moved to New Zealand at the age of 8. Hiruni is currently completing her Law Degree at the University of Auckland but also holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Commerce. She enjoys travelling, gardening and interior decorating.