Profiles and E-Book

Brent Walker – Kihikihi

Brent Walker. PHOTO: Alan Gibson

“In January I started building my own house in Kihikihi with my brother.

About a month before Lockdown I changed my situation and got in a disability provider to look after my Enabling Good Lives (EGL) budget.” Read more.



Jessica Hita, Tuhoro and Te Aurere Hita-Paki – Hamilton

Te Aurere Hita-Paki. PHOTO: Alan Gibson

“We moved in with Mum and Dad in their four-bedroomed Horotiu house. There were eight of us in all.

We enjoyed it, we found it a bit easier. It was good having them all around. Everyone who stayed here are Te Aurere’s favourite people.” Read more




Stewart Colin John (CJ) Harford – Gisborne

CJ Harford. PHOTO: Alan Gibson

“Living with my friends was a good thing about Level 4, but there were things that were not very good, so I had to get out of there. But that was okay, I have always been unsettled, always ready to move, it’s just what I was used to.” Read more





Julie and Harper Veli – New Lynn, Auckland

Harper Veli. PHOTO: Alan Gibson

“When Lockdown came, I think it just didn’t sink in.

The first week was okay. We got up early, went for walks and I would show Harper McDonalds is closed and all these places are closed.” Read more





Michael Pulman – Hamilton

Michael Pulman and partner Jess. PHOTO: Alan Gibson

“We were as set up for Lockdown as best we could be. It was a pretty hectic time. We had about a week to get ourselves ready so that involved me having conversations with each of the staff.” Read more




Cheryl Kayes – Lower Hutt

Cheryl Kayes. PHOTO: Jeff McEwan

“The hardest thing about Lockdown for me was not seeing my Mum. I visit Mum two or three times a week. She lives a few blocks away. It takes me half an hour to walk there.” Read more






Tyrone Cook – Hamilton

Tyrone Cook. PHOTO: Alan Gibson

“Before Lockdown I was going out, going to the gym, going shopping, met up with my mum once or twice a week and my support worker would take me op shopping, I love op shopping. And then Covid-19 happened.” Read more







Millie Matahiki – Ngāti Porou / Ngāpuhi / Gisborne

Millie Matahiki. PHOTO: Alan Gibson

“I was actually brought up at Tokomaru Bay with my nan, but she moved to Gisborne and then my great-uncle died, which I found hugely upsetting. I tried to take my own life. It was a very silly thing to do.” Read more





Darling-Mei Brown – Hamilton

Darling-Mei and Heather Brown. PHOTO: Alan Gibson

“Lockdown was pretty good because I could TikTok and I did classes with my tutors. I was calling my tutor and my friends during Lockdown.
I downloaded TikTok on the app, it was easy from the store.” Read more







Shian McCartan – Lower Hutt

Shian McCartan. PHOTO: Jeff McEwan

“I like to keep busy and go out and do lots of things. During Lockdown I couldn’t go out and do my usual activities but I liked being home with the staff all the time. I love the staff.” Read more







Jamie-Leigh, Puke and Manaakiao Timoti – Ruatahuna

Manaakiao Timoti. PHOTO: Alan Gibson

“It was a last-minute thing to come to Ruatahuna… we’re blessed to have two homes and work that spreads us between two regions.
Once given the warning that we would be moving to Level 4 we had to make a quick decision as to where our whānau would be best placed.” Read more






Sophie Lynch – Pegasus, Canterbury

Sophie Lynch. PHOTO: Shannon Beynon

“I’m doing a diploma in business at Ara Institute of Canterbury. I started doing four courses this year.
I did a certificate in business at Ara last year. I like numbers, I like logic. I’m good at spreadsheets.” Read more







Debbie Smith – Upper Hutt

Debbie Smith. PHOTO: Jeff McEwan

“I like walking a lot. I walk in Totara Park and I go down to the local shops and I like talking to people when I’m out. Everyone knows me around here!
The staff would call me on my smart watch to check I was okay and to remind me to come home.” Read more







Moana Rewi – Ngāti Kahungunu, Gisborne

Moana Rewi. PHOTO: Alan Gibson

“I was looking forward to my birthday on March 28. I was going to turn 31 and had planned a big whānau dinner. Then the Lockdown came.” Read more




Elisabeth Carr – Upper Hutt

Elisabeth Carr. PHOTO: Jeff McEwan

“One of the biggest things in my life is my doll collection that I keep in my room.
I have over 300 dolls from 52 nations. I started collecting them when I was 12 because Mum and my step-dad went overseas and brought me a doll back.” Read more





Patsy Matete – Te Arawa, Gisborne

Patsy Matete. PHOTO: Alan Gibson

“I enjoyed myself in Covid-19 going for a walk. My doctor told me to walk. It’s good. I do more walking now. My staff have noticed that I have lost weight. I want to set a goal. I can still do it.” Read more






Jan Potter-Black – Gisborne

Jan Potter-Black. PHOTO: Alan Gibson

“I like to keep my unit nice – the kitchen clean, the carpet vacuumed, the lawns done and the pots and garden nice and tidy.
During Lockdown I did it all by myself, I did everything, it pushed me into going that little bit further and achieving a little bit more every day.” Read more






Pip Parkes and Shannon Thompson – Gisborne

Pip Parkes and Shannon Thompson. PHOTO: Alan Gibson

“How long have we been together? I don’t know. I lose track, I think three years. I fell in love with him and he’s nice to me. He’s my partner. I like that he’s got tattoos. We first met on an online dating site. I said to him ‘would he like to come to Gisborne?’ and…he’s here!” Read more






Tiffiney Perry and Jack Harvey – Hamilton

Chris Harvey and Tiffiney Perry watch on as son Jack Harvey shoot hoops. PHOTO: Alan Gibson

“Lockdown was revitalising in a lot of ways. We slept in and we did a lot of exercise because the weather was good. We listened to Jacinda, we stayed home; we saved lives.” Read more




Hearth Trust Home – Lower Hutt

Timothy, Andrew and Corey live at their Hearth Trust home set in Lower Hutt’s western hills where they are supported by staff and volunteers. This has been their home for the last few years. Read more





Corey Wilkie – Lower Hutt

Corey Wilkie. PHOTO: Jeff McEwan

Corey relished his time in Lockdown spending more time on the land, helping out wherever he could and getting involved in a whole range of activities with those in his bubble. Read more




Andrew Reynolds – Lower Hutt

Andrew Reynolds. PHOTO: Jeff McEwan

Andy spends Monday to Friday at Hearth Trust and goes home to live with his parents at weekends in Trentham. Read more




Timothy Chadwick – Lower Hutt

Timothy Chadwick. PHOTO: Jeff McEwan

Lockdown was the longest time Timothy has had away from his parents.
He stays at the Hearth Trust home full time, but his parents often visit and he goes home regularly in the weekends. Read more







Mary Anne Gill is communications manager at Enrich Life, a shared services agency providing back-office support to charitable trusts, including Life Unlimited.

Jeff McEwan was a press photographer at the Evening Post and Dominion Post.

Alan Gibson has for more than 20 years drawn on his passion and talent for visual storytelling, capturing national and international events for the New Zealand Herald.

Hayley Redpath was a print journalist with The Nelson Mail and The Evening Post before moving into health communications for Tairawhiti District Health Board and Māori health provider Turanga Health.

Gisborne-based Kristine Walsh worked for more than 20 years in a print newsroom covering rounds from health and politics to community issues and the arts until, in 2016, she cut herself loose to double down on her dual passions of writing and vintage paraphernalia.

Juliet Young is a former radio and print journalist of 12 years before moving into media management in politics and the public sector where she’s held a number of communications roles.

Shannon Beynon has been crafting words and images for more than two decades in broadcast and print media and, more recently, as a communications consultant.

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