Meet Rebecca Nelson - Westfield Local Heroes 2021

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Meet Rebecca Nelson - Westfield Local Heroes 2021

Caring for our heroes

Te Kiwi Māia
Inspiring. Effervescent. Passionate

Rebecca Nelson is building much-needed support for injured first responders and defence force personnel through her organisation Te Kiwi Māia (The Courageous Kiwi).

Rebecca is a Reservist of the Royal New Zealand Navy and was inspired to set up her charitable trust after visiting a facility over in the UK that her friend attended.

The charity has been running for just 18 months, but Rebecca’s contagious passion means she has already rallied a team to help Te Kiwi Māia provide rehabilitation services to the people who help keep New Zealanders safe.

The goal is to establish a working farm where first responders and defence force personnel with physical and psychological injuries can visit to recover.

Her dedication has encouraged first responder organisations and the New Zealand Defence Force to come on board and work with the charity to achieve its goal.

One of her significant achievements is an annual Wellness Workshop to improve collaboration and information sharing between the organisations.

“It is a huge honour and privilege to be nominated as a Westfield Local Hero. Knowing what our first responders see and do daily motivates me to look after them and help them live their best lives,” says Rebecca.

Westfield Local Heroes are nominated and voted for by their communities, with the three top finalists per Westfield centre each awarded a $10,000 grant for their affiliated organisation. Te Kiwi Māia will use its funds to take a group of first responders and New Zealand Defence Force away for a week of respite.

For further information on the Westfield Local Heroes program, click here