A Te Puke mum of three young boys said she involved her children in the community so they would grow to think helping people "was the norm".

Monique Lints was involved in many community initiatives and said she did not enjoy being in the public eye, but if she could inspire one person to help their community, it would be worth it.

"If everyone gave up an hour of their day, imagine how amazing our communities would be."

Monique had been the president of the Te Puke Toy Library for the past four years.


The Lints family was in a serious car accident five years ago and her eldest son Aiden, who was now 8, suffered a spinal injury.

Monique said the toy library played a big role in helping with Aiden's development and recovery.

She said her other two sons Dan, 6, and Levi, 4, loved the toy library too.

The Te Puke community gardens was a family affair. Monique had been involved for the past four years and her mum Julie Gray was the chairwoman.

"My kids come down, my dad often helps out, and so do my nieces and nephews."

Monique was also part of Environment Te Puke, which worked towards promoting public awareness and participation in caring for Te Puke's environment.

On October 26 a free parenting show called The Parenting Show with Pio was available to Te Puke families thanks to a group of locals, including Monique.

She said the free event was "accessible for the whole community" so everyone could attend and learn about different parenting styles.

Monique was also involved with the popular Te Puke community markets.

It was a monthly opportunity for people to come together and share their produce and crafts.

"It's good to give mums, who work from home, a platform to be able to grow their businesses as well."

The community market had been "picked up really well" and was very popular last season. Monique expected the market to be even bigger this season.

The determined mum was also part of a team of people trying to get a community centre in Te Puke.

There had been a lot of support from the community, and the plans were already in motion, with the focus of having a centre within the next year.

Monique had already begun passing on her community goodwill traits to her son Aiden who created a lego club called Brick Kids.

The club meets every Friday at Fairhaven School, and more than 20 pupils usually attend.

To make sure she fits everything into her day and cares for her family, the busy mum often works into the night.

"As long as it works around them [her sons] I'll do it. A lot of my meetings are done when they're already in bed."

Monique was also Aiden's fulltime carer and said he usually had two to three hospital visits a year.

"If he needs me I drop everything," she said.

Giving back to the community was Monique's way of being "more than a carer or a mum".

"It's food for my soul."

Monique's list of community work
- President of the Te Puke Toy Library
- Part of the Te Puke community gardens
- Organiser of the Te Puke community markets
- Member of Environment Te Puke
- Helps with Brick Kids lego group for her son Aiden
- Part of the Civil Defence Emergency team for Te Puke