February is a Month About Love

Love on Valentines Day (14th) – Safer Internet Day (7th) – International Stand Up to Bullying Day (24th)


February is a month about love, kindness, and thoughtfulness.

Its a time of making connections, and reaching out to someone.

Yup, love is normally on my mind in February, however this year I seem to notice that most of the news is scary, and coming from many directions. With all that is going on in the States and around the world, it can be quite overwhelming and unthinkable. My daughter has been angry, “Look at what is happening to the environment – will the world even be liveable when I grow up?”

And then I got an email from my mother. She sent me a memoir that shared how the generation that were born in the 30’ and 40’s are the last ones who experienced the Great Depression, World War II, the Vietnam War, etc. It made me wonder about who wrote this memoir – how come the civil rights and women’s movement weren’t included. My daughter and I both told my mother our thoughts.

Then my mother sent me another email. She sent me stories of how children were still being born, people found love, families celebrated special occasions, and neighbours and communities got together for shared meals and events. Life still goes on. Do you remember the bombing of the Boston Marathon in the States?

My mother said to me – that was a horrible thing to happen. Now keep your eyes out for all the people helping, all the people who care, all the people who are making a difference. There are more of them.



And it is true.



There are more people doing good things in the world. There is more love in this world. There are so many people who are creating solutions to significant problems, helping and standing up for humanity and the environment, and being the change they want to see in the world.

When you spend your time noticing that, there is the blessing.

February is a month of love. Let’s make each month, each year, and each moment we have a time of love and peace.

Our kids deserve it, we deserve it.

Author: Kristi Shaw


Thank You 2016! Bring on 2017!


Thank You!

To All the Volunteers, Youth Groups, Participants, and Communities,

To Our Partners and Collaborators,

We love you all and couldn’t have done 2016 without you!

Thank you for doing what you do – and here is a little snapshot of 2016…


Enabling a Youth-Centred and Co-Designed approach to tackling bullying in schools and the community.


Student Leadership Teams have been focused on decreasing bullying and cyber-bullying in their communities. Look at what they have done!

  • Over 80 mentors have been trained to support junior students
  • Pink Shirt Day event that includes: Facebook campaign, free ‘complimentary cupcakes’, and lunchtime concert!
  • The Big Sit event included a barbeque and lunchtime concert for a mass sit-in
  • Speed Friend-shipping event where students made new friends, challenged stereotypes, and shared pizza!
  • A Cyber Safety Team has been initiated

The I AM I Showcase and Exhibition explored the theme of ‘Belonging’ in collaboration with Zeal in December with ~ 60 performers!


Family Fun events that showcases local early childhood education, social and health services, with lots of fun activities for the whole family to enjoy.


Massey, Auckland – 5 to 6000 people participated with 26 volunteers

Panmure, Auckland – 5000 people participated with ~ 20 volunteers



Community Treasure Hunts – for families to explore, connect and learn about their local communities.


Safer Henderson Town Centre and New Lynn/Green Bay with over 400 residents participating



Successful transition to school for preschoolers

TDO Picture

“Little Kauri brings the community and school together…children who start school having attended Little Kauri are a lot more focused and ready to learn compared to the ones who are coming straight from home.”

We are all connected in some way in our communities, and we would like to thank you all for helping, participating, and connecting up with each other – It takes a community to raise a family! And it takes a family to connect with its community!

Happy New Year and wishing everyone all the best for 2017!!



Free Community Event!


Fun for the Whole Family!

Bring your family and friends to discover all the treasures in the area

Lots of activities, fun things to try, and lots to explore.

Your team of family/friends will follow a treasure hunt in your local area to discover hidden treasures in your community that you may have never heard about before. The teams will have fun doing different challenges and activities to go into the draw to get prizes at the end.

Come along, you may see some friends and neighbours there too!


Looking for a fun way to volunteer?

12 Nov 11am to 4pm at Panama Rd School



Do you love people?

Do you love the idea of helping out in the community?

Do you want to gain some work experience?

On Saturday 12th of November we’re celebrating the Panama Road community with an awesome free event: an “Our Amazing Place” community treasure hunt. Aimed at families with young children, they will form teams and follow a pre-set route through the neighbourhood to connect with community organisations and collect stamps on their passport…

And we need your help: if you have a couple of hours to spare, please join us!

The day (including set up and pack down) is from 11 – 4 pm but a morning or afternoon shift is appreciated as well.

Panama Road could really use your help to make this day great!

I’m looking for people to help set up, do the registrations, hand out evaluation forms, help families cross the road safely, point the way to stall holders… find lost parent and be creative with face painting!

It looks good on your resume, will be loads of fun and you’ll make new friends. Travel costs reimbursed, sausage sizzle lunch provided.

Please contact me (Annalily) for more info: or 021-2207136 or 09-8326408. Or txt me and I’ll call you back.


Hope to see you there!

World Suicide Prevention Day 10 September

suicide prevention hand and boy

The World Suicide Prevention Day on 10 September, is coming up and communities in Auckland, New Zealand, and around the world, are gearing up to bring awareness, understanding, and care to their friends, families and communities. Most people in NZ know someone, or of someone, who has taken their own life – not because they wanted to, but because it just became too painful.

Wanna show you care and connect with others who want to do the same?

On the 3rd September, check out the Walk of Hope. Locations all around Auckland!

In the meantime, and behind the scenes, Keep On Keepin’ On: Suicide Prevention and Awareness Aotearoa, and Bullying: Not Our Future, have teamed up to bring you the annual Keep On Keepin’ On Carnival on 13 November at Corbans Estate. There will be a whole variety of opportunities leading up to the carnival to participate in fun events and initiatives for the whole family. We will share them here!

BNOF logo

Lets be caring, spend more time, and share more love with our families and friends! The ripple effect will be felt…


Bullying: Not Our Future

BNOF logo

Bullying: Not Our Future

Violence Free Communities has teamed up with Austar Realty to coordinate youth-led anti-bullying/youth empowerment initiatives in West Auckland. We are both so proud and excited that this project now has a new name and logo!

A Big Shout out to:

  • The Personal Best Mentors at Massey High School for brainstorming the new name
  • Shan Yu, a senior student leader at Massey High School, who designed the logo

Bullying: Not Our Future initiatives so far this year:

Massey High School:

  • Almost 100 senior students trained as peer mentors (PBM – Personal Best Mentors)
  • PBM teams visit each Year 9 class on a weekly basis for support and friendship
  • PBM Leaders creating PBM Strategic Plan and Mentor Handbook
  • PBM Leaders organised the Pink Shirt Day event
  • PBM Leaders are organising 3 more initiatives this year:
    • Humans of Massey High School, Making connection – Social Experiment, The Big Sit event

The “I AM I” Project:

  • A creative arts and self-development project for youth in West Auckland with a difference
    • 8 different creative arts, working together with a common theme to showcase at a final exhibition/event

More to Come:

Violence Free Communities are currently working on more collaborations with schools, community groups and organisations to bring more initiatives into West Auckland!

‘I AM I’ – a youth creative arts project with a difference


The ‘I AM I’ Project

Violence Free Communities are excited to join together with the creative team at Zeal for the ‘I AM I’ Project – a creative arts programme for youth with a difference! There are 8 different creative arts focus areas where participants:

  • choose an art
  • create & explore a common theme for the semester
  • showcase their themed creative projects together at a final exhibition/event

‘I AM I” – Create – Learn – Expand – Be part of something BIGGER than yourself

I AM I starts in mid-August, so get in quick!

Front of Programmes Flyer sem2
Zeal Workshops sem 2back