Since becoming a mother herself, Chloe Wright has lived a life of mothering many who have come under her care.
A mother of five, her maternal instincts have given her an overarching impetus to nurture, care and protect, valuing individuals for their uniqueness.
When asked to what she attributes her humanitarian spirit, Chloe traces it back to her birth family. The youngest of nine children, Chloe and her siblings were taught from an early age not only the importance of sharing, but also how crucial it is for your social wellbeing to look out for one another.
"You do anything for family, without view of reward or debt," she says. "You bond together and stand as one against the challenges that the world presents."
It is only fitting then that Chloe and husband Wayne have involved their children - Wayne, Joseph, Samuel, Oliver and Belinda - in establishing the Wright Family Foundation, which is dedicated to supporting others and giving them, as they had, opportunities for nurturing, supportive networks.
"For some who haven't been as fortunate to be raised in loving, stable homes as we were, I see the foundation very much like that of a wrap-around parent figure: a voice for those who have none and a hand to reach out where we can to those who are down.
"Individually we may not think we can do much, but we can if we throw our hearts out in front and run after them."
The foundation encompasses a number of projects and organisations that are dedicated to enabling people to fulfil their potential through education in a broad context. Through the Wright Family Foundation, Chloe's drive is to open pathways to a more cohesive people and country.
"Each of us has the capacity to live our dream, but we all, at some time, need a mentor to guide us in the right direction."
EDUCATION IN ALL FORMS
Chloe and Wayne's love of children and education led the Wrights to transfer their early childhood education business Kidicorp - now named Best Start - into a charity. This is a legacy that would, in time, enable thousands of Kiwis to benefit and reach their potential.
The move heralded the start of the Wright Family Foundation and set the tone for the core of its work with education.
"We have never seen ourselves as 'the ambulance at the bottom of the cliff' - rather as the roots and wings for future generations of New Zealanders."
Since that move, Chloe has worked to support ventures in the education field.
An avid reader - their Omokoroa home is named 'Fallohide' after a race of Hobbit from J. R. R. Tolkien's classic - Chloe supports the Kids' Lit Quiz, dubbed the sport of reading, through the foundation.
You do anything for family, without view of reward or debt, you bond together and stand as one against the challenges that the world presents.
This year, teams of 10 to 13-year-olds from around the world are competing in the world final in New Zealand and, thanks to the foundation, they will have access to free accommodation and meals, as well as excursions to understand more about our country.
She's also passionately involved in the NZ Spelling Bee, Graeme Dingle Foundation Bay of Plenty and House of Science, enabling the not-for-profit science educator to hire more staff to the benefit of running additional programmes for their students.
"Seeing the children involved in these projects come out inspired and uplifted, knowing they've gained a life experience and skills that will set them up for life, makes me feel like a proud mum - so to speak," says Chloe.
The maternal instincts certainly kicked in when she started Bethlehem Birthing Centre too.
Through this, Chloe has enabled numerous women to experience birth as a natural and positive experience in partnership with the district health board.
As part of the foundation, Chloe is funding this centre to ensure all eligible women can be supported to give birth without intervention, and receive intensive post-natal care free of charge.
Having given birth to five children, she attests to the strength a non-intervention birth gives, and wants to enable other women to have a nurturing post-natal experience. "The first three days are critical in creating a supportive environment," she says.
EXPERIENCES & EXPLORATION
But why education? Because Chloe sees education as the building blocks for creating a better future - and it doesn't involve just hitting the books. Expanding your mind to different ways of thinking and gaining insight into a world beyond your own are, she believes, equally important to knowing your ABCs.
"My personal belief is some part of us lasts forever and that this life is a stopping-off place. What you take with you is your experience and knowledge."
The value of people's life experiences are at the heart of an ongoing TV campaign initiated by the foundation, titled People Matter. For the past year, the foundation has been running short, unscripted interviews with real New Zealanders on TV, capturing the essence of what is important in these Kiwis' lives. The campaign is designed to get people talking, by presenting the hardships and joys of everyday life in this country that often we're too afraid to face.
"It's a tough world out there, and it's too easy to turn a blind eye to the realities which many of us deal with every day," she says.
This was a project Chloe initiated in the hope that the messages of kindness, tolerance and understanding would resonate with viewers. These candid interactions are what Chloe wants to foster through the foundation - not just between two people, but whole communities, and to empower people to seek to know more about their world.
"It is my hope that by bringing these issues to the forefront we can build a more tolerant, understanding nation - one that doesn't judge a book by its cover, but takes a moment to think before they act. Let's help raise each other up."