Thank you for voting for your Westfield Local Hero

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Thank you for voting for your Westfield Local Hero

We congratulate all of our finalists and recognise the important contribution they make to the local community. The successful Westfield Local Heroes will be announced on 12 October.

Westfield Local Heroes is a community recognition and grants program, connecting and enriching local communities.

Westfield Local Heroes are nominated and voted for by their communities, with the outcome of the public vote determining the three Westfield Local Heroes for every Westfield centre. Each of the affiliated organisations of the successful heroes will be awarded a $10,000 grant to support their work to thrive. Westfield will award 126 grants across Australia and New Zealand – totalling $1.26 million.

Your finalists for Westfield Manukau City are:

Dave Lockwood

YMCA North
Passionate. Community-minded. Innovator

Dave Lockwood has rolled up his sleeves to give 1,000 South Auckland school students an opportunity to enjoy the awesome school camps that other Kiwis take for granted. As outdoors group manager at YMCA North, Dave has raised funds and entered partnerships to enable schools closest to the iconic Camp Adair to enjoy its facilities.

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. If Dave is successful, YMCA North will use its funds to subsidise the cost of the sports camp.

Kelly Francis

Whenua Warrior
Dedicated. Passionate. Inspirational

Kelly Francis was inspired to found Whenua Warrior four years ago when she realised the key to solving food insecurity was to revolutionise food production. Her trust has built 480 organic fruit and vegetable gardens in backyards and public spaces with the abundance of produce shared in the community.

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. If Kelly is successful, Whenua Warrior will use its funds to buy soil and seedlings to build 20 more gardens.

Makaia Carr

Kura Kai
Selfless. Generous. Passionate

Makaia Carr sprang into action at the start of COVID-19 to feed families and ensure rangatahi (youth) could stay in school instead of having to work. She launched non-profit Kura Kai, recruited more than 1000 volunteers and started stocking freezers at 21 high schools, including five in Auckland, with food for students to take home.

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. If Makaia is successful, Kura Kai will buy more freezers for more schools and spend the rest of its funds on ingredients, packaging and labels.

Paul Dickson

Oke Charity
Selfless. Dedicated. Motivated

Paul Dickson sowed more than edible plants when he founded Oke Charity in 2015 to establish gardens in local schools. He aimed to teach children how to produce their own food, but the benefits have kept growing. The project has created outdoor learning spaces for 10,000 children, created jobs and brought the community together. Paul was a Westfield Local Hero finalist in 2019 and appreciates being nominated for a second time.

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. If Paul is successful, Oke Charity will be able to install and manage a garden at an additional local school.

Shayal Mala

Age Concern Auckland Inc.
Dedicated. Compassionate. Giving

Empathetic Shayal Mala has made it her life’s work to ensure elderly people stay healthy, fit and independent for as long as possible. Shayal’s caring and sunny nature are perfect for her role at Age Concern Auckland where provides advice at regular workshops and events.. She helps people feel at ease as she shares tips on preventing falls, eating well and sleeping better.

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. If Shayal is successful, Age Concern Auckland will use its funds to cover the costs of her workshops and health promotion activities.

Wendy Keate

Victim Support Counties Manukau
Empathetic. Compassionate. Professional

Wendy Keate is a dedicated volunteer for Victim Support Counties Manukau, where she helps traumatised people build their strength and regain control of their life. Wendy underwent her training in 2020 and has already supported close to 100 clients, many of whom have experienced an accident, crime or the suicide of a loved one.

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. If Wendy is successful, Victim Support Counties Manukau will invest in volunteer training and will be able to reimburse volunteers for their travelling costs.

If you need support, contact Victim Support: 0800 842 846


If you need support, please phone Lifeline: 0800 543 354.

Recognising all our 2021 nominees

View all of the Westfield Manukau City nominees and their organisation