Champions of Kāpiti has relaunched as Champions of Change with five new faces.

The group first launched in July last year with seven volunteers — Andy Christiansen, Mike Tahere, Jess Ward, Elan Van Mills, Kaz Deverill, Debs Phillips and Brian Colegate.

"Since launching, our Champions have been busy promoting that family violence and harm are not ok and helping point those who need help in the right direction," Champions co-ordinator Ross McCracken said.

"There have been numerous highlights throughout the year including winning the health and wellbeing category of the Community Airport Community Awards and young local singer song writer Peyton Morete's song Little Guys winning the Champions of Kapiti song competition where two notable highlights.


"Buoyed by the success of our initial launch there has been a strong desire to expand the number of volunteers and also be inclusive of Ōtaki.

"Our seven champions are now being joined by five new faces — Lesley Watkins, Karen Millane, Queenie Rikihana Hyland, Kāpiti mayor K Gurunathan and Doug Johnston.

"It's really exciting to have these new faces on board.

"They each bring so much more to the champions project in terms of different life experiences and skills.

"Champions of Change is all about everyday local people in the community who are trusting and willing to support those in need as well as take a stand against family harm and violence.

"Often a local friendly face can be much easier in the first instance to approach and talk too rather than approaching an agency."

The Champions of Change launch is being held at the Mediterranean Foods Trattoria and Deli Paraparaumu on Saturday at 3.30pm and will also include the national launch of Peyton's song Little Guys.

The launch is open to the public from 3pm with official proceedings starting at 3.30pm.


The Champions role is voluntary and supportive — they are not there to respond to a crisis.