Who we are

Kenzie's Gift is committed to improving the emotional well-being and mental health of tamariki (children), matatahi (young people) and their families affected by cancer, serious illness or bereavement. 

 

Our vision is:

One where Aotearoa promotes and nurtures good mental health and emotional well-being for all families affected by cancer, serious illness or bereavement.

 

Our mission is:

To create a brighter future for young Kiwis affected by cancer, serious illness or bereavement by supporting good mental health and ensuring no young Kiwi faces serious illness or grief alone.

 

Why the work of Kenzie's Gift matters

A diagnosis of cancer,  serious illness, or bereavement is some of the most difficult and challenging life events whānau will ever experience. By providing early intervention, Kenzie's Gift fosters coping and resilience strategies to assist in supporting, restoring and maintaining good mental health. Our services provide a safe and secure environment where young Kiwis can fulfil their potential. 
 

Early intervention is vital

Investing early mental health support for young Kiwis and their families affected by serious illness, cancer, or bereavement not only reduces the misery, loneliness and trauma associated with such family challenges but saves millions in future costs to the health and welfare system, education and social costs.

The Kenzie's Gift Team


Nic Russell

Nic Russell

CEO

Nic Russell: Nic Russell founded Kenzie's Gift in 2006 with the intent of providing appropriate and research-based psychosocial support for tamariki, mātātahi and their families experiencing cancer, serious illness or bereavement within the family. 

Nic has a degree in Psychology and a post-graduate degree in Communications Management and PR. Specialising in the health and social sector, Nic has extensive experience in campaign development, stakeholder management and championing social issues.

As a recipient of the New Zealander of the Year, local hero award, she is seen as a passionate social change agent who can turn visions into reality.


Sarah Idle

Sarah Idle

Digital Marketer

Sarah is a writer, editor, grammar-obsessive, part-time adventurer and full-time word tickler. She has over 10 years’ writing and editing experience across a huge range of sectors. Since launching her own freelance copywriting business 5 years ago, she's worked with some of New Zealand's most well-known brands in insurance, airlines, banking and more. She specialises in digital copywriting and digital marketing, everything from websites and blogs through to social media and chatbot conversation and design. 

You can see some of her work at her website: www.theidlestable.co.nz

 


Jane Bissell

Jane Bissell

Grants and Communications Writer

Jane specialises in helping others tell their own life stories and memoirs as a mentor, co-writer, and ghostwriter, and works alongside those writing in other genres as an editor and tutor.  Jane is also an experienced workshop facilitator, conducting online and ‘in-person’ workshops for life and memoir writing, storytelling, and journaling.

Jane is the author of two books, Welcome to the Amazon Club and The Pink Party, and the editor of a collection of creative stories written by women living with metastatic breast cancer called Oysters for Lunch.  Jane's two books describe her own experience of breast cancer and the journeys of other New Zealand women living with breast cancer. 

She has worked extensively for cancer-related charities as an administrator, funding application writer, Blogger, and story and web content writer.  

Jane lives by the beach on the Hibiscus Coast north of Auckland where she works from her writing studio, The Writing Place. 

More information about Jane can be found on her website www.janebissellwriting.com 

I never thought about any of this until I got cancer. Now I understand the need for the support Kenzie's Gift offers and how important it is for children to have access to it.

- Nesha's son Cody was helped by Kenzie's Gift

A gift

When serious illness, a diagnosis of cancer, or a bereavement occurs within a whānau, everyone is affected. 

 

Kenzie's Gift supports tamariki, mātātahi and their families through these emotionally challenging times. 

 

For tamariki and mātātahi, the impact can be intense, emotionally traumatic and long-lasting. The intervention of clinically proven therapies at this difficult time can give them the tools and coping mechanisms they need to deal with the fear, anxiety, grief and loss experienced when they, their siblings, or a parent are diagnosed with cancer or serious illness, or there is a bereavement within the whānau. Such timely interventions can also help to avoid or minimise emotional difficulties in later life. 

 

Our free one-to-one therapy programmes are based on the latest evidence and research and delivered by registered health professionals who are skilled and passionate about the work they do. 

 

Kenzie's Gift is endorsed and supported by well-known writer, presenter and psychologist Nigel Latta. 

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