Hi, my name is Genieva, but everyone calls me GG. I started at Pride Lands ten years ago in 2011, and it has been absolutely the most amazing journey I have been on.
I was raised in a small community, up the Whanganui River. There is no cell phone coverage, and the nearest shop is one hour away. There are no streetlights, no public transport, and animals still don’t know how to tell the time (daylight savings).
As a child I was lucky to have the best of both the country and city lifestyle. I grew up where a community meant something, where you had to be innovative to do things on your own, and to make up games out of what you had, where everything that your Nan and Koro taught you was a life skill that you would need when you got older, and where everyone knew that our children are our future and they need to carry those life skills forward.
We were raised knowing that every child was important, that they had a purpose, and they were needed. They had a skill that was important for the community. If we stayed, it was a gift for our community, but if we left, we always knew where our home was.
Pride Lands is like that community. We are very lucky to have a foundation that stands tall, holds firm, and stays strong. Thank you very much to the Ariama family for your strength and support.
It has been an honor to work with all our amazing staff members past as well as present, who have shared their knowledge, experience, and skills with us, so we could leave a positive impression on our next generation. Thank you for teaching me and our cubs.
To all our parents, caregivers, students past and present it has been absolutely amazing to have you all as part of our community. The trust and support that you gave us for the care of your loved ones is the biggest gift that we as the community of Pride Lands is lucky to have. Thank you for believing in us.
To all our present cubs, thank you for still being with us.
Pride Lands is a place where we call home. Were everyone is family, and everyone is important.