AKL | Jay Ruka
AKL | Jay Ruka

AKL | Jay Ruka

Jay Ruka has worked in full-time Christian ministry since his early twenties, as a youth mentor, mission director and church minister. He is currently employed as a story-teller, producing resources and speaking itinerantly into topics of culture, Christian faith and New Zealand missional history as it relates to how the gospel interacts with the Māori world. Author of Huia Come Home, he communicates a vision for the future of Aotearoa, highlighting the significance of Te Ao Māori and the beauty of cultural partnership.

AKL + CHCH | Sean du Toit
AKL + CHCH | Sean du Toit

AKL + CHCH | Sean du Toit

Sean is a husband to Sue, a father to Ava, a New Testament lecturer, and a theologian at Tearfund. Once he was a high-school drop-out, an amateur snow-boarder, a pastor and a wannabe drummer. His PhD explores early Christianity and its relationship to the Graeco-Roman world. Sean is a popular speaker around Aotearoa and South Africa but loves serving in his home church: Rhythms of Grace, in Auckland. The story of how he became a follower of Jesus is pretty cool (ask him about it!). He is passionate about seeing people flourish in all dimensions of life.

CHCH | Katie Kingsthwaite
CHCH | Katie Kingsthwaite

CHCH | Katie Kingsthwaite

Coming from a background of social justice involvement and with a degree in International Politics and Communications, Katie has been passionate about justice for most of her life. She is currently employed as the South West Baptist Church response coordinator to support Muslim families that were directly impacted by the March 15 Terror Attack in Christchurch, and to help encourage churches and individuals to build stronger connections and relationships with refugee and migrant communities.

CHCH | The Porter Duo
CHCH | The Porter Duo

CHCH | The Porter Duo

Hine and Hemi Porter are a long way from their beloved home of Taranaki. Up until recently you will have heard Hine as a radio host on Tahu FM. Hemi is mad on surfing and spends most of his days complaining about the lack of quality waves in Christchurch. 

Both Hine and Hemi are part of the Satellite band line up that play to thousands of teenagers at Southern Easter Camp each year. They both have a passion to write and perform music in Te Reo, to celebrate, share and reclaim the beautiful indigenous language of Aotearoa.

CHCH | Ben Scott
CHCH | Ben Scott

CHCH | Ben Scott

Ben Scott is the founder and owner of Christchurch’s biggest and most unique barber, Benny’s Barber Shop. 

Ben started the business about four years ago after a rugby injury forced him to give up a building apprenticeship. He fitted out a caravan and began operating from his parents' Burnside property. 

Having built a strong following, helped in no small way by slick haircuts for All Blacks and other rugby stars shared on social media, the company has now expanded to employ 14 staff across the new flagship site on Disraeli Street, and the CBD barbers in the ANZ Centre.

Ben’s passion to see others succeed and to build community has seen the flagship store being used for more than just haircuts, including the recent launch of the ‘Book a Yarn’ service where customers can open up about complex issues to a trained 'yarnologist', without the intimidation of talking to a counsellor.

 

CHCH | Alanna Chapman
CHCH | Alanna Chapman

CHCH | Alanna Chapman

Every 27 seconds a vulnerable person is either sold or trafficked into slavery. After coming face to face with modern day slavery, Alanna and her husband, Pete, decided they wanted and needed to do something about this global issue. They started 27Seconds, a wine label that gives 100% of their profits away to survivors of slavery. The Chapman’s like to believe that God still is at work with wine in the 21st century.

AKL | Aro
AKL | Aro

AKL | Aro

Aro are a blend of stories in song expressing the people, the culture and the land of Aotearoa.

Following on from their first nationwide tour in 2018, the duo released their debut bilingual album ‘Manu’ on Waitangi Day this year. The 10 track album was transcribed from the melodies and rhythms of New Zealand's native birds and plays on their characteristics and significance for Māori. 'Manu' and its kaupapa to convey messages about identity are being shared around the country on Aro’s second nationwide tour in March to May 2019.

Love defines this jazz-pop-RnB, husband and wife duo, and harmony is their signature. Aro are a kiwi, van-dwelling pair made up of Charles (Ngāpuhi, Te Rarawa, Waikato, Te ati awa) and Emily Looker (nee Rice).

CHCH | Bevan Whiting
CHCH | Bevan Whiting

CHCH | Bevan Whiting

Bevan is a trained carpenter and lift designer with fifteen years of mechanical and industrial design experience. The creative mind behind sustainable bespoke design studio, Frontal Lobe, Bevan brings building know how and design skills to the table. The Frontal Lobe brand is built on a foundation of environmental impact, community involvement and personal balance. For Bevan community, creativity and sustainability are natural expressions of his faith.

AKL | Mia Sutherland
AKL | Mia Sutherland

AKL | Mia Sutherland

17-year-old climate change activist, Mia Sutherland, hails from Christchurch. Mia is a leader of 'School Strike 4 Climate New Zealand' and was the guest editor for Stuff in May this year to bring greater awareness to the climate emergency.

"My mission is to ensure that I will have a safe future free from the disastrous consequences of climate change. To do this I try to educate and assist individuals in their transition to a sustainable lifestyle and put pressure on governments and corporations to make changes to their practices," says Mia.

Along with this, Mia enjoys writing poetry, singing, cooking and walking her family's dogs.