Willow Duffy – CEO
Willow is a founding member of Safeguarding Children and has worked as a nurse and midwife for over 30 years. She has a postgraduate qualification as a Specialist Community Public Health Nurse Practitioner (Health Visitor) from the UK. Willow managed a caseload with child protection concerns on a daily basis and at a time of great change in the child protection system. She also trained as a child protection supervisor for nurses.
Willow has worked as a Plunket Nurse, and later with youth as a Sexual Health and Family Planning Nurse and as part of a specialist team as a Forensic Nurse for sexual assaults (SAATS/MEDSAC Nurse). Willow has worked as an advisor for Children’s Action Plan and Oranga Tamariki and in 2017 was a finalist in New Zealand Women of Influence Awards.
Willow believes that communities hold the key to keeping children and young people safe, and that we all have a vital role to play. Her drive is to protect our most vulnerable citizens and bring their unique needs to the forefront of all we do.
Ruth Browning – Safeguarding Consultant
Ruth is a qualified Social Worker and member of the Social Workers Registration Board with a current practicing certificate. She has been a social worker for 20 years and has a wide range of experience working with children, youth and their families in both non-government and government organisations. This experience includes as a Social Worker and Family Group Conference Co-ordinator for Oranga Tamariki for several years.
Ruth understands child protection from both within Oranga Tamariki as well as within the community. She has a drive and passion for creating healthier and safer communities where children and young people can thrive.
Ruth has a Masters in Social Research and a Post Graduate Diploma in Social and Community Work. Ruth is Social Work Supervisor and lectures on a Social Work degree course.
Kirsten Taylor – Operations Manager
Kirsten has a wide range of skills in office management and looks after our clients, eLearning development and all things operationally for Safeguarding Children. She has managed call centres overseas, has been a travel agent as well as runs her own business with her husband.
At Safeguarding Children, Kirsten organises everything that is required for our organisation to run efficiently. She is passionate about Child Protection and is committed to ensuring that Safeguarding Children delivers the highest level of service possible.
Renée Strickland – Administrator
Renée is responsible for the day to day running of the Safeguarding Children office. She is proficient in implementing processes and systems for the smooth running of our organisation.
Safety is a theme which has featured throughout Renée’s working career, having worked in the food, aviation and commercial property industries. Renée is looking forward to applying this work experience to help keep our children safe.
Jo Sutton – Digital Projects Coordinator
Jo’s initial background, on completing her IT degree, was in various Oracle web-based developer roles, located in New Zealand, Australia and the United Kingdom. Her knowledge of web development and maintenance, graphics design and general IT troubleshooting is a great fit for our advancing technical environment.
She is responsible for building and updating our online courses and managing digital projects. Jo also troubleshoots IT issues both in-house and with any of our online courses or group management issues.
Jo and her husband have owned their own successful businesses over the past 15 years in motels and advertising/marketing while raising their enchanting twin girls. She loves being a part of a small team and helping to make a positive difference to children in New Zealand.
Ronda Kelling – Customer Service / Course Administrator
Ronda is a highly qualified administrator with over 20 years’ experience, providing thorough and skilful knowledge in administration, office management, event planning, accounting and executive level support. She has built her career over the years working in the tourism, creative/arts, beauty, home building and super yacht industries.
As the Course Administrator at Safeguarding Children, she is committed to doing the very best by the charity, providing a first-class and friendly customer experience and prompt resolution of any queries, complications or issues that may arise.
While navigating the adventures of parenthood with her own young daughter, Ronda is proud to be part of a passionate team dedicating themselves to the safeguarding of children in New Zealand.
Deborah McConochie – Sales and Funding
Deborah has a background in business management, sales and marketing.
She has held senior positions in marketing and sales and owned and operated a business with her husband for 26 years.
At Safeguarding Children, Deborah is committed to ensuring that all our services are promoted and accessed nationally.
Kelly Mahuika – Project Manager
Kelly is an experienced Project Manager with a demonstrated history of working in the medical practice industry. She is adept at leading multidisciplinary teams both in the public and private sectors. By merging her experience in clinical midwifery with an interest in mobile health technology, she designed and developed a digital tool for parents and caregivers that works to improve both maternal and child health outcomes across New Zealand. Kelly continues to work with local families, educating and helping them prepare for parenthood in her role as the Pregnancy to Parenting Educator at the Nelson Marlborough District Health Board. Kelly is very proud to join the team at Safeguarding Children and is looking forward to contributing to the vision by working to make New Zealand a safer place to grow up.
She holds a Bachelor of Science, Post Graduate Certificate and Diploma in Midwifery from Ara and Otago Polytechnic Institute of technology respectively as well as a Bachelor of Arts in History with a minor in Women’s Studies from the University of Hawai’i.
John Parsons – Internet Safety Consultant and Presenter
John has worked with us as a specialist presenter and advisor for a number of years. He is a national Internet Safety and Risk Assessment Consultant to schools, the private and health sectors, providing specialist advice and direction on the safe use of Digital Communication Technology.
John delivers cyber safety workshops to those who work with young people and parents/caregivers. He also works with individuals, young people and families who have become ensnared by predatory adults across digital networks, those who have been cyber abused and children and youth who abuse others online.