On the grass at Kensington Park in Whangarei and sporting a cute bob haircut, I was three years old when I first picked up a hockey stick, and I haven’t put it down since! (Although I highly considered it multiple times…but that’s a story for another day!)
I’d like to think that hockey is just one of the things that has shaped my life, along with my career and amazing support network. It’s been a roller coaster of a journey from a lanky, gumpy 15 year old whose nick name was ‘baby giraffe’ to having the honour of wearing the black singlet for New Zealand at the Rio 2016 Olympics, and playing over 100 games for my country. I spend my spare time eating, paddle boarding, beach-ing, yoga-ing, watching home and away and spending time with friends and family.
In 2013, I graduated as a Sir Edmund Hillary Scholar from the University of Waikato with a Bachelor of Communications, and since returning from Rio, I have become an Olympic Ambassador. Through visiting over 50 schools, I have found my passion for helping young girls who are in the same boat as me when I was at high school, to support them through such a transformational time and help them find a sense of balance. I've immersed myself in self development courses, books and podcasts, completing "The Female Leader" course run by Altris in 2016, and the "Conscious Boss Bootcamp" in 2017. I'm really excited for this next chapter while I continue to build towards the 2020 Tokyo Olympics!
Meeting my other half, Cam, 7 years ago at a hockey camp
The Olympics, and sharing the experience with my brother who played with the Black Sticks men
Performing on stage with my dance teacher (and mum) in my final year at school
Returning to my old primary school after the Olympics and remembering back to when I was in their shoes
Losing my best friend, Caitlin to cancer
Spending 3 years in pain with my right knee injury (but read my blog if you want to see why this was also a highlight)
Getting my teeth knocked out by a hockey ball
This foundation is dear to my heart. One of my closest friends, Caitlin Hawthorn, passed away from NET cancer three years ago. She is the strongest person I know, and fought this nasty and aggressive cancer for two years.
Quick facts about Neuroendocrine Cancer:
One kiwi is diagnosed every day
Number of patients are higher than brain, ovarian or cervical cancers
Vital treatment is not funded or available, costing patients up to $50,000 each
Being an ambassador for this foundation, I aim to help educate and advocate how asthma and respiratory diseases affect a large number of kiwis.
1 in 6 kiwis have a respiratory disease
It is the 3rd most common cause of death in New Zealand
It costs the country 5.5 Billion each year
1 in 6 children in NZ have asthma