iDEAStarter winners show creative flair

Source: Auckland Tourism, Events & Economic Development (ATEED)

It’s one thing to come up with an idea and another to demonstrate the know-how to make it a business reality.

Finalists of Auckland’s entrepreneurial competition, iDEAStarter, were put through their paces at Auckland University of Technology (AUT) last night in a dragon’s den style pitching event.
After tough deliberation, judges selected two winners across the competition’s two age categories.

iDEAStarter winners for 2018:

Ski Sock (15-18 category) 
Helping ski enthusiasts carry their skis with an innovative carrying device
Team members: Emma Welte, Isobella Nicholls, Steffy Henry Albert, Eden Alter

MapMyCrop (19-24 category) 
Providing accurate data for the horticulture sector using new technology
Team members: Jaskamalpal Barsa, Lue Reed

iDEAStarter is delivered by Auckland’s economic growth agency, Auckland Tourism, Events and Economic Development, which works to stimulate a culture of innovation and entrepreneurship with a focus on creating quality jobs for all Aucklanders.
Judge, Wynona Dekker, CEO at the University of Auckland’s Unleash Space says a common theme that came through in the entries was the real emphasis on making people’s lives better; whether that be through health opportunities or creating fun environments. 

“The wonderful thing about ideas generated by 15-24-year olds is that they haven’t spent an entire career becoming accustomed to risk and limitation, so they’re willing to have bold ideas.”
Auckland Councillor and youth advocate, Richard Hills, says the competition is a great avenue for young people to let their ideas grow, get legs and take shape. 

He addressed the finalists saying; “Your ideas are what Auckland needs to be an inclusive and diverse city. It’s your ideas which will fix traffic congestion, restore and protect our environment, create new and interesting jobs, and change the way we do things today.”

ATEED General Manager Economic Development, Pam Ford, commended all those who entered iDEAStarter and congratulated the winners.

“It’s really important to support young people to dream, create and do – they are our future business leaders and exporters,” she says.

“iDEAStarter is a platform which gives budding entrepreneurs the mentors and tools they need to help them on their journey. We’ve seen impressive businesses built from previous competition winners, which shows that it really works to nurture talent from the outset.”

iDEAStarter winners each receive up to $10,000 in business start-up support, which includes:

•    Nine-week entrepreneur programme with CO.STARTERS@AUT
•    $1000 Scholarship from Massey University
•    Accounting Mentoring from Chartered Accountants
•    Accounting Software from Xero
•    An AWESOME technology package
•    Office space and membership at GridAKL offices

Hauora Tairāwhiti braces for strike action

Source: Tairawhiti District Health

10 July 2018

NZNO nurses and healthcare assistants have rejected a fourth DHB settlement offer and Hauora Tairāwhiti is now making final adjustments to contingency plans for strike action this coming Thursday.

NZNO nursing and healthcare assistants covered by the NZNO MECA have issued notice for a full withdrawal of labour for 24 hours from 07:00 am on 12 July. Approximately 95% of nurses and healthcare assistants at Hauora Tairāwhiti are members of NZNO, meaning that there will be more than 380 of these staff members on strike. All midwives employed by Hauora Tairāwhiti are members of the Midwifery union, MERAS, and therefore are not involved in the intended industrial action.

There will be significant disruptions to all services. Jim Green, Hauora Tairāwhiti Chief Executive says “We have a very experienced contingency planning team which has put together a plan for essential services and to ensure the organisation runs as smoothly and safely as possible during the strike period. The main focus is patient and staff safety.” 

“Our preparation is a little different from that of the proposed strike on 5 July. The fact that school holidays will have started poses a challenge in itself, that there are usually more admissions and presentations during the school holiday period.”

The contingency plan includes how the wards and departments will be managed during the strike period.  In addition, an agreement is in place between the union and the DHB to ensure that there is staff available for critical situations.  This is referred to as Life Preserving Services (LPS). Mr Green adds, “We are very grateful to the non-striking staff, volunteers and families who will also contribute to keeping patients and staff safe.”

Most planned services have been rescheduled to minimise delays for patients who are in acute conditions to be seen quickly, however, there may be delays in the Emergency Department if people come on Thursday. There will be significant changes to the way we work and provide service during strike action.  During the period of the strike, some inpatient wards will be open, as will the emergency department. 

The main message for the Tairāwhiti community leading up to 12 July is to see their GP or nurse or call Healthline 0800 611 116 in preference to coming to the emergency department for non-emergency problems. However, for urgent cases, you should not delay in seeking medical attention or coming to the emergency department. For any concerns from the public regarding appointments or services, the hotline 0800 800 620 has been created and is now active.



Media queries can be directed to Hauora Tairāwhiti Communications Manager – or 021 223 7094

Canterbury DHB prepares for NZNO strike

Source: Canterbury District Health Board

​​​New Zealand Nurses Organisation (NZNO) nurses, midwives and healthcare assistants have voted to strike from 7am Thursday 12 July until 7am Friday 13 July. This will significantly impact services at all Canterbury DHB facilities.

As part of its contingency plans Canterbury DHB has started postponing and rescheduling approximately 800 outpatient appointments and around 150 surgeries. Patients whose appointments and procedures are being postponed will be contacted directly by phone by Canterbury DHB staff.

Note that most complex surgeries that were scheduled to occur before the strike are also being postponed to reduce the number of people in our hospitals during the strike period. Some urgent surgery, such as cancer surgery will go ahead.

Our priority is to ensure we maintain safe patient care and minimise disruption for inpatients during the strike period.

Importantly, all of our hospitals and health centres will remain open and continue to provide essential and urgent services including emergency departments, acute surgery, intensive care, cancer treatments, maternity services, renal dialysis, and our wards will remain open but with reduced capacity.

Remember in Canterbury if you need health care advice, make your general practice team your first port of call for care around the clock. 

You can phone your usual GP team after-hours for free health advice. When they are closed your call will be put through to a nurse who can advise on what to do and where to go if it’s urgent and you need to be seen by a doctor. 

In an emergency, you should still phone 111.

Chief executive David Meates says Canterbury DHB regrets having to defer specialist appointments and surgery.  “We appreciate how disruptive this it to those affected. Please be assured our staff are trying to rebook patients as quickly as possible.

“I would also like to thank everyone who has been working on our contingency planning for their work to date preparing for this strike and to everyone involved in ensuring that essential health services will remain available during the strike.”

If patients need to check on their appointment, they can call the number on their appointment letters. If possible, quote the NHI number which is usually in the upper right hand corner of the letter. If people can’t find their appointment letter, they can call 03 364 0640 and ask to be put through to the appropriate department.  

Budget boost confirmed for Upper Harbour

Source: Auckland Council

Upper Harbour Local Board will benefit from almost $17 million of funding to maintain and enhance parks, sport and recreation, community services, community facilities, governance and environmental management in the 2018/2019 financial year.  

Key local board initiatives receiving funding include:

  • the development of a comprehensive Upper Harbour Open Space Management Plan to help management of parks to ensure they continue to meet the community’s needs
  • environmental improvement projects to improve and restore the area, such as; contributing to Auckland’s Ngahere (Urban Forest) Strategy, continued support for the Upper Harbour North-West Wildlink Assistance Programme and the Sustainable Schools Project – ‘Our local streams’
  • projects to reduce waste and pollution through an Industrial Pollution Prevention Programme in Rosedale and an ambassador programme for small building sites to reduce their impact on the local environment
  • reviewing and updating our current Greenways Plan to provide a sound basis for further investment in walking and cycling in our parks.

In response to community aspirations, Upper Harbour Local Board successfully advocated for a new multi-use, indoor sports facility in Whenuapai to be included as part of Auckland Council’s 10-year budget process.  

Local Board Chair Margaret Miles says, “With rapid population growth across our area, facilities like these will be required for our new and current residents located in and around Whenuapai.

“We will receive $100,000 in the coming financial year to undertake the business case phase of our initiative, and this will provide a firm basis for the next phase of the project.

“Timeframes for the project have not yet been confirmed, but we’ll be doing all we can to have this project advanced as quickly as possible so that we can continue to appropriate facilities for indoor sports.”

Matariki kapa haka showcases the power and strength of wahine

Source: Auckland Council

Two of Aotearoa’s best kapa haka will perform in celebration of Matariki and mark 125 years of women’s suffrage in New Zealand at Te Taumata Kapa Haka – Wahine Toa on Saturday 14 July at the ASB Waterfront Theatre.

This high energy event showcases the power of wahine in a cultural context and is an unmissable highlight of Matariki Festival 2018.

Don’t miss captivating, live performances from Te Waka Huia and Waihirere – who have held the Te Matatini national title an impressive 11 times between them. Both groups will perform songs about wahine toa (powerful women) and waiata poi. 

Another highlight is the accompanying lightbox installation, A Celebration of Wahine Toa, outside the ASB Waterfront Theatre, featuring striking images of kaihaka wahine (female performers) presented by Te Matatini Kapa Haka Aotearoa and supported by the Auckland Design Office. The installation highlights kapa haka icons and is on display as part of Matariki Festival until 22 July.

Chair of the Auckland Council Community Development and Safety Committee, Councillor Cathy Casey, is delighted to see the power and strength of wāhine celebrated this Matariki. 

“Our wāhine are important and powerful leaders in Aotearoa and it’s fantastic to see this celebrated through kapa haka to mark the 125th anniversary of women’s suffrage. Don’t miss this special opportunity to recognise this milestone and see New Zealand’s best kapa haka in action for free.”

Join us as we celebrate wahine toa in the kapa haka world at Te Taumata Kapa Haka on Saturday 14 July at the ASB Waterfront Theatre. There are two sessions – 1pm and 7pm – get there early as it’s free entry on a first-come, first-seated basis.

Matariki Festival is proudly hosted by Auckland Council in partnership with iwi manaaki Te Kawerau a Maki, with the support of Te Wānanga o Aotearoa and Vector Lights (principal partners), AMI Insurance (supporting partner), SKYCITY, Huawei P20 and Te Matatini Kapa Haka Aotearoa (supporters) and Mai FM (media partner).

For more information visit and Facebook. #matarikifestival

Two arrested following investigation into Whangarei bank robbery

Source: New Zealand Police

Whangarei Police have this morning arrested two people in connection to the aggravated robbery at the ANZ bank in March.

A 23-year-old and a 25 year-old male from Whangarei have both been charged with aggravated robbery and are due to appear in the Whangarei District Court on 11/07/2018.

Acting Detective Inspector Aaron Proctor says these arrests are a great result which follows a determined effort by staff over several months into this investigation.

“We want the public to be assured that we will go to every length to hold offenders to account.

“This was a frightening incident for staff and witnesses at the scene and we hope these arrests will provide some reassurance to the community.

“We also want to thank the members of the public who assisted our investigation by providing information which helped in identifying the alleged offenders.”

Acting Detective Inspector Proctor says Police will continue to make enquiries into this incident and we cannot rule out the possibility of further arrests.

Anyone who has information about this case but has yet to speak to Police is urged to contact Detective Sergeant Dave Wilkinson on 09 430 4500 or you can contact Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.


Nick Baker/NZ Police

Govt’s use of PPP for Waikeria smacks of hypocrisy

Source: National Party

Whether the Government has been deliberately duplicitous or simply chaotic with regards to the public-private partnership for Waikeria Prison, it is yet another example of its shambolic handling of law and order, National’s Corrections spokesperson David Bennett says.

“Labour spent years campaigning on cancelling public-private partnerships, with Jacinda Ardern saying just before the election that Labour did not agree with PPPs when it came to building core infrastructure like prisons.

“Kelvin Davis is on record in Parliament damning PPPs for building and maintaining prisons and in 2016 he blasted the decision by then-Corrections Minister Judith Collins to build and maintain a new prison at Waikeria.

“So it was a surprise to everyone that after all this big talk, the Government went ahead with a $750 million PPP contract to build and maintain Waikeria Prison for 25 years.

“Given the contradiction between its campaign promise and its decision to sign a PPP contract for Waikeria Prison, Ministers were questioned in Parliament where they claimed that a contract had been already been signed under National.

“When asked about the contract, Associate Finance Minister David Clark said that ‘They [the National Government] signed the contract and it cost $34 million’. Finance Minister Grant Robertson subsequently doubled down, saying a ‘PPP contract for Waikeria Prison was in place and that breaking it would’ve cost significant sums of money to this Government’.

“When asked today whether these statements were incorrect, Corrections Minister Kelvin Davis refused to provide a ‘yes’ or ‘no’ answer, and instead waffled on about how he was happy with Corrections running Waikeria Prison.

“It is clear that the statements were incorrect but whether Ministers were being deliberately misleading or were simply confused remains to be seen.

“Either way, Mr Davis has been a complete hypocrite in damning PPPs for three years in Opposition, signing a $750 million PPP contract for the new Waikeria Prison and then attempting to justify his conversion of Damascus by having his colleagues falsely claim that the Government was bound by a contract signed by the previous Government.”

Invercargill City Council on naughty list

Source: Taxpayers Union


The New Zealand Taxpayers’ Union says ratepayers have been let down by Invercargill City Council’s decision to spend almost quarter of a million on a building to store Christmas lights. Taxpayers’ Union spokesman Louis Houlbrooke says, “First the Council sent staff on a junket to China to find Christmas lights, then it discovered its new lights weren’t compliant and had to buy more, and now it’s spending twice what it did on the lights to build a building to store them.” “Is the Council seriously not able to just rent some empty garages?” “Invercargill ratepayers won’t bear annual rate hikes happily when they see their hard-earned money eaten away by this kind of spending.”

This week in history – the Rainbow Warrior bombing as told to ABC’s Nightlife

Source: Dr David Robie – Café Pacific – Analysis-Reportage:

Journalist, media educator and author David Robie … Rainbow Warrior bombing reflections
after 33 years. Image: PMC

Pacific Media Watch Newsdesk
Pacific environmental and political journalist David Robie has recalled the bombing of the original Greenpeace flagship Rainbow Warrior 33 years ago in an interview with host Sarah Macdonald on the ABC’s Nightlife “This Week in History” programme.

Dr Robie, now professor of journalism and director of the Pacific Media Centre at Auckland University of Technology, wrote the 1986 book Eyes Of Fire: Last Voyage of the Rainbow Warrior that has been published in four countries and five editions.

LISTEN: Terrorism in Auckland in 1985

The 2015 edition of Eyes of Fire with the Rongelap
evacuation on the cover. Image: LIP

He spoke of the humanitarian voyage of the Rainbow Warrior to Rongelap Atoll in the Marshall Islands to fetch the islanders to safety in a four-voyage relocation mission.

The Rongelap community had been ravaged by the fallout and the long-term health impact of US nuclear testing.

Dr Robie was awarded the 1985 Media Peace Prize by the NZ Peace Foundation for his coverage.

His reflections were broadcast in a 23-minute programme broadcast at the weekend marking the bombing by French secret agents on 10 July 1985.

David Robie’s cover story for the Fiji-based Islands Business on the Rainbow Warrior bombing in August 1985.
Image: PMC

$10 million project to help 3D printing start-ups

Source: New Zealand Government

A world-leading entrepreneurial researcher will be joining the University of Auckland to help foster potential start-ups in the 3D printing industry, Education Minister Chris Hipkins said.

The Government and the University of Auckland are investing $10 million as part of the Entrepreneurial Universities programme. The project sees multi-award winning Professor Olaf Diegel start with the Faculty of Engineering in early 2019, following a successful tenure at Sweden’s prestigious Lund University.

 “We are fortunate to have secured Professor Diegel, a world leader in creating new products that provide innovative solutions to engineering problems,” Chris Hipkins said. 

“Professor Diegel’s work aims to establish New Zealand as a global leader in Additive Manufacturing (AM), a technique used to build 3D printing technology. It’s  already been used by Kiwi start-up Rocket Lab to build its ground-breaking rocket motor that cleverly used parts made by 3D printers.

“This project however, will fast-track New Zealand’s ability to develop more commercial products using AM.

“Professor Diegel has dedicated much of his career to developing entrepreneurship. He has been involved in seven university start-ups and was a board member of Lund University’s VentureLab ─ helping students turn their ideas into start-ups,” Chris Hipkins said.

Having founded AM labs at Auckland University of Technology, Massey University and Lund University, Professor Diegel has developed more than 100 commercialised products, including patenting a portable device and method for regulating the temperature of a substance, successfully commercialised as an insulin cooler by Medactive.

Notes to editors –

Biography of Professor Olaf Diegel

Recognised as one of the most accomplished multi-disciplinary Additive Manufacturing (AM, 3D-Printing) product development researchers in the world, Professor Olaf Diegel will join the University of Auckland’s Faculty of Engineering in early 2019 to lead their new Creative Design and Additive Manufacturing Laboratory.

Professor Diegel has extensive commercialisation experience having developed over 100 commercialised products with a number of companies in New Zealand and overseas. This includes products for Selecon NZ (which was acquired by Philips), Theatrelight NZ, Micron, Cruzpro, Medactiv, Lifeina, Microlife, Wohlers Associates and Spengler ─ helping to make these companies internationally competitive.

Since 2014, Professor Olaf Diegel has been based in Sweden at Lund University’s School of Engineering, leading the Product Development Department. He is also a Board member of the University’s VentureLab, helping students turn their ideas into start-ups.

Prior to that he worked for a number of New Zealand universities leading their product development, mechatronics and robotics research. He is also an associate consultant at Wohlers Associates, participating in a number of AM-related research projects and a principal author of the annual Wohlers Report.

Here is more information about Entrepreneurial Universities.