Established in 2020 to build on the great work of the past thirteen years, the Warriors Community Foundation strives to connect, educate and inspire our local communities.
We were founded on the belief that rugby league is more than just a sport, but an avenue to bring people from all walks of life together, in a shared passion, who care about their families and the communities they are part of.
We tackle social issues with programmes and community initiatives that support mental health, anti-bullying, literacy, and other wellbeing skills that support success for our youth.
To leverage the energy, values, and mana of the Vodafone Warriors as a platform for promoting positive social change that makes a difference in New Zealand communities.
Our goal is to deliver initiatives that promote positive social outcomes that are relevant and topical. Our foundation will enable us to tailor initiatives that can deliver stronger more resilient communities.
We are extremely grateful for the support we receive from our partners'. Our partners generous financial support helps fund community programmes that deliver positive social outcomes. Partnering with the Warriors Community Foundation gives organisations an opportunity for rich engagement with New Zealanders through relevant and meaningful connections.
I have been involved in community engagement and management of the non-for-profit sector for over 13 years after moving from the UK where I taught as a primary school teacher and worked in a school sports partnership delivering sports programmes to over 180 schools. I love the mahi in the community with our tamariki and rangatahi and I’m excited about the journey we’re embarking on alongside the Vodafone Warriors. The potential to create something special is a great driver. The Foundation team is developing exciting programmes that will create a space for positive social change. The fans have been the lifeblood of the Vodafone Warriors for many years and now the Warriors Community Foundation will be the enabler to increase wellbeing within our communities. Being able to connect with more people around Aotearoa is an exciting prospect. He waka eke noa. We are all in this together.
I started at the Vodafone Warriors as an intern in 2006 and have since served in numerous roles at the club, including my current role of GM of Community, the NRLW team and the newly launched Warriors Community Foundation. My focus during my 14 seasons with the club has been my work in the community and my vision and pursuit of setting up the Warriors Community Foundation. The Foundation, I envisage, will help support further the club’s work and contribution back into the community. In addition, I took on the role of manager of the NRLW team in 2020. I am a strong advocate for women in league, having achieved the honour of being the first female life member of the Auckland Rugby League Referees’ Association. As a successful marathon runner, I have completed eight full marathons around the globe and I will commit that same focus, drive, determination, endurance and passion to my work and personal life. My husband Aaron and I live in Auckland and jointly have three children.
Community Programmes Coordinator
I coordinate and facilitate events and programmes for the Warriors Community Foundation using the Vodafone Warriors’ brand as the vehicle to inspire our tamariki. Through my football career in both rugby league and rugby union plus previous employment, I have had plenty of opportunities to engage with the public. I enjoy the diversity and pride myself in having the ability to build a rapport with a variety of ethnicities and cultural backgrounds. I am strongly committed to team-building and professional development. I take pride in my personal appearance and am regarded as a leader with a strong sense of personal motivation. I have proven ability to build and work collaboratively in a strong team environment, and independently. My passion and dedication to see the development of the Warriors Community Foundation is the driving force to every aspect of my work. I am committed to working alongside other members of our team and I understand that without the people behind the scenes doing the mahi that the business wouldn't be as strong.
Through my background in professional sport and various work roles I have developed significant experience in and a real love for interacting with people from diverse backgrounds and working in team environments, notably in rugby league and rugby union. Having my role with the Warriors Community Foundation enables me to draw on all those experiences, not least my time with the Warriors in the NRLW premiership and representing the Kiwi Ferns. I am committed to and truly believe in creating positive relationships with people and the need to provide great customer service in whatever I do. My strengths are my communication, enthusiasm, adaptability and open-mindedness. I am a clear and effective communicator; I’m capable of working around unexpected changes; I find joy in every activity I’m involved in; and I believe understanding others helps to work better with them. The bottom line is I love working with people and brining joy to their lives.
Ruben Wiki ONZM
Warriors Community Foundation Ambassador
My mission is to inspire young people to reach their potential – don’t let anything stop you from achieving your goals. I want to show the next generation it's possible. Where you grew up, where you come from, ethnicity or anything else doesn't limit you and what you want to achieve. You can do it. As a family we have established a gym in Otara - Wiki Workz Fitness - to promote healthy living in our community and to promote the values my mother instilled in me when she harped on about education. If you take a path in sport, that's great but education is so important, too. I'm proud to be the Warriors Community Foundation's ambassador, giving me the chance to help with programmes on improving literacy, focusing on wellbeing and raising awareness of issues surrounding domestic violence. We've helped almost 300,000 school children with our programmes so far but there's so much more we can do and I want to be part of that.
I am the global marketing manager for Autex Industries, my family business which I (along with Michelle) are third generation employees! My role in the Warriors Community Foundation is to build our recognition within the community using my marketing background, help conceptualise and deliver new community projects and bring a lot of passion and fun to our team. Being a Robinson, I am naturally a die-hard rugby league fan but enjoy nearly every sport and spend a lot of my spare time either playing or watching it. Being raised in both Melbourne and Auckland, with a stint in the UK, I now live in Auckland with my partner and Golden Retriever, Freddy.
Marcel van Vliet
Hi there, I am the Autex CFO or chief bean counter. Born and raised in Holland I did not grow up with league or the Warriors. I have had the opportunity to come close to the team and the great community work they do. It was easy to become very enthusiastic about being involved in the Warriors Community Foundation. One of my greatest passions is to help educate the next generation. Key in any learning process is understanding. Without understanding what you are being taught, very little will be retained. The way the foundation presents and runs its programs is a fantastic way to help with the understanding and involvement of young people. It is a great opportunity to reach out and encourage passion and the right attitude.
I am the manufacturing manager at our family business Autex Industries and have just hit my 10-year anniversary. The nature of my job means I look after a large chunk of the business which involves managing and helping a lot of different people. I am very passionate about my role. With all our family being huge league fans, it was a no brainer to jump on board when the opportunity arose. I am also on the board of the Rosebank Business Association, so with my experience I am hoping to contribute where I can to the Warriors Community Foundation and being part of the positive change this will make to so many people’s lives.
I am a lawyer in the private client team at Glaister Ennor. I worked with the Vodafone Warriors to establish the Warriors Community Foundation and along with the other trustees, my role is to ensure the foundation meets it charitable purposes and complies with any legal requirements as well as overseeing its charitable activities. I have worked in the area of trusts and foundations in many jurisdictions around the world including the United Kingdom, Cook Islands, Channel Islands, Canada and New York. I’m married with five children and of course a long time Warriors supporter!
How can my business help? Take the opportunity to help the community through partnership with the Warriors Community Foundation.