Each year we take on tauira for the summer as part of Ngāti Whātua Ōrākei’s internship programme. We had a kōrero with Kiran Pollock, Manager of Toi Tupu & Systems Accountant, who started his mahi with us as an intern back in 2018.
During his three-month internship within the Toi Tupu / Finance team, Kiran was in the middle of completing his conjoint degree in Law and Commerce. Kiran demonstrated a strong work ethic, and an interest to continue working at Whai Rawa and at the end of his internship, he was offered a full-time role as Toi Tupu assistant. One year on, he was promoted to Toi Tupu Coordinator & Financial Compliance, and now, after another promotion, Kiran leads the Toi Tupu team, managing the day-to-day tasks and planning.
“When I first started as an intern the Toi Tupu scheme was relatively new and there was a lot of mahi to do to help make whānau aware of it. I really got a hands-on experience with helping to build it from the ground up and developed an application pathway which was at that time yet to be set up,” he shares.
“We are closing in on having 70% of hapū members participating in the Toi Tupu scheme. It has been really rewarding to see the membership base grow, but ultimately our aim is to see that number get to 100%.”
A member of Toi Tupu himself, Kiran urges more whānau members to sign up to the scheme.
“It’s free and it’s really easy to sign up to. It’s all done online but we’re here to help, so if you struggle with that there’s the option to give us a call and we can talk you through the process,” he says.
Created to not only provide a savings scheme for whānau, Toi Tupu is also designed to increase their financial capability and foster a culture of savings and investment. Kiran says one of the best parts of his job is hearing from whānau who have benefitted from the scheme.
“This year especially, I know many whānau have been grateful to have their Toi Tupu funds to fall back on in times of hardship as a result of Covid-19 but we’ve also seen members withdraw their funds to put towards buying their first home which is exciting,” Kiran shares.
“I really enjoy my job as I get to engage with whānau regularly. I’m really grateful for the opportunities that the Whai Rawa internship has presented to me and it’s been rewarding to progress my career within our hapū,” he says.
If you would like to find out more details on Toi Tupu, or would like to sign up, click here.