About NorthAble

Since 1990 NorthAble's vision has been to be the innovative and leading provider of equipment, information and disability support services in Northland.

How we became Northlands largest disability and wellbeing support organisation.

In 1990, the Northland Disabilities Resource Centre Trust was formed by a small group of people with lived experience of disability who had identified the lack of readily available information about disability services in Northland. Initially the organisation operated as a DIAS (Disability information and Advisory Service), but other services were added as the need was identified. In 1996 they had outgrown the original office and moved to 40 John St.

In 2005 the name of the organisation officially changed to NorthAble Matapuna Hauora. Under this banner, which focuses not only on disability, but the whole concept of wellbeing, the organisation continues to grow, with new services added to meet the ever-changing needs of our population throughout Te Tai Tokerau and the whole of Aotearoa New Zealand.

Our NorthAble Logo

Our logo has been refined over the years to evoke values and direction of our organisation. In 2021 we adopted the Koru shape which represents peace, tranquility, change and personal growth. But it was also inspired by Northland and the harmony between the land and the sea.  The 3 words, evoking, empowering and compassion were all considered when designing the logo concepts which come across in this design.

Taonga Harakeke

This Taonga was designed and woven by Polly Rau, who was moved by the input of Disability Resource Centre  participants into the Huarahi Maori programme during their weaving session and wanted to acknowledge their creations. The Taonga speaks of a person’s journey through life, beginning at the time of conception. This taonga is to hang in the room to awhi the Tukutuku and the tangata Hauaa.

Nga Kete

Nga kete were made for Northland Disabilities Resource Centre by then Manager, Joanne Samuel. These kete are a contemporary interpretation of the three baskets of knowledge. All three are made from harakeke, or flax.  The top most kete speaks of the earth, the mountains, of growing things and our physical lives. The second kete This basket speaks of the ocean, te moana, the cleansing power of water and our emotional lives. The lowest kete talks of the air, our breath and our spirit, and the movement of experience and learning that is necessary in our lives.

Te Maataapuna Hauora

Tena ra……. E te iwi e

Ko matou tenei

Te Maataapuna Hauora
E tu atu nei
ki te mihi kia koutou

Ki te Atua
Nga whakawhetai maha
Mo nga manaakitanga
Ki runga I a tatou

Titiro mai e te iwi
Ki tenei roopu manaaki

Aroha mai… ki a matou

Nga kaiawhina kaiwhakahaere
o te kaupapa

Awhinatia tautokotia
Te hunga hauaa o te taitokerau
E rapu nei he oranga mo ratou

Kia piki ano
te hinengaro me te wairua
Ki te taumata hirahira
O nga whakaaro

Korihi ano

Meet the team

Noel Mathews


Kia ora. I took up the NorthAble CEO role in 2004. I lead a dynamic group of staff who have, at the core of their working ethos, the best interests of the families, whanau and individuals we are here to support. I look forward to continuing to improve access to disability supports, especially for people that not only need our services currently but also those that may need our services in the future.

Noel Mathews


Bronwyn Collett

Facilitation Services Manager

Adam Dade

Chief Operating Officer

Vanessa Jennings

Business Services and Operations Manager

The Trustees

Marion Blake
Marion Blake


Alistair Drake
Alistair Drake


Mereana Te Whata
Mereana Te Whata

Sandie Waddell
Sandie Waddell

Anne-Marie Morgan

Service Facilitator

Niki Clark

Support Coordinator

Pam Arbon

Support Coordinator

Zelde Morrison-Smith

NorthAble EQ+ Retail & Sales Supervisor

Anna McIntosh

Senior Financial Mentor

Jessica McCready

Financial Mentor

Vicki Wakefield

Financial Mentor

Shannon Philips

Community Educator

Gina Johnston

Support Coordinator

Hayley Richards

Support Coordinator

Josie Clayton

Finance Administrator

Nicole Ross

COVID Response Mentor

Claire Lewinksi

Pathway Finder

Paytyn Bristow

Support Coordinator

Claire Lewinski

Danell Stewart

LYNKZ Facilitator

Marion Blake


Sharon Tahere

Facilitation Services Lead Facilitator

Te Rau Allen

Māori Liaison Office & Support Coordinator

Alistair Drake


Mereana Te Whata

Sandie Waddell

Cheyenne Harris

Facilitation Services Lead Facilitator

Abbe Clark

LYNKZ Facilitator

Join the team

See our latest job vacancies


Service Facilitator

Full time

We have an opening for a Service Facilitator role in our organisation, giving you a chance to join a forward-thinking team prepared for the future of delivering outcomes under the Enabling Good Lives Principles. The available position is based in our Northern cohort, who support people based from North Whangarei to Cape Reinga. We offer flexibility in work locations and hours, so applications from across the rohe are welcomed. We also encourage people with lived experience of disability to apply.

The Service Facilitator role works with an identified caseload to ensure that individuals and their family / whanau are supported through a whole of life approach through the utilization of the principles of Enabling Good Lives. The right candidate will have the skills and attitude required to empower individuals and families/whanau to think aspirationally about their life goals and facilitate access to support to meet these goals across a variety of funded and community support options.

Key Objectives include:

  • Establish and build rapport with individuals and their family/whanau
  • Gather information as required from a range of sources to establish desired outcomes
  • Work with the individual and family/whanau to develop and action person-centered outcome plans
  • Actively apply the aims and objectives of the New Zealand Disability Strategy and the principles of Enabling Good Lives

Required Skills and Competencies:

  • Experience of the disability sector (either professional or lived experience) preferred
  • Knowledge and understanding of the New Zealand Disability Strategy, United Nations Convention on the Rights of Disabled Persons, and Enabling Good Lives Principles
  • Knowledge of Consumer Code of Rights for Health & Disability
  • Knowledge and understanding of Te Tiriti o Waitangi and equitable service delivery
  • Customer service focused: committed to providing exceptional customer service across all channels – written, phone and face to face.
  • Communication: the ability to communicate clearly and concisely, varying communication style depending upon the audience.
  • Attention to detail: excellent attention to detail and written skills when communicating with others, both internally and externally.
  • Teamwork: willingness to assist and support others as required and get on with team members.
  • Time management/organisation: accomplish objectives effectively within time frame given and carry out administrative duties within portfolio in an efficient and timely manner.

For a full copy of the Job Description, or to express an interest in this role, please email vanessa.jennings@northable.org.nz. We will send an application form for you to complete and return to the same address. If you require more information about this role, please contact Bronwyn on 09 430 0988.

Applications close on September, 9th at 5 pm.

LYNKZ Program Co-ordinator

Full Time

  • Are you passionate about working with people with disabilities?
  • Are you bright and vibrant?
  • Can you help our whanau achieve new learning and create memories?
  • Can you help people establish meaningful relationships?
  • Do you want to make a real impact on people’s lives?
  • Do you enjoy organising and facilitating activities and events?

YES? Then get in touch as this could be the role for you.

We are looking for TWO individuals to join our team and facilitate the day-to-day running of our daily LYNKZ program in either Whangarei or throughout Northland .

Working at NorthAble, you will have an opportunity to be part of an organisation that puts people at the heart of what we do, both our teams and our clients. We are all about whanau.


This role is full-time Monday to Friday office hours (with the occasional extended day for numerous activities such as trips to Auckland or our overnight camps) based out of our Whangarei office.  

Check out our Facebook page https://www.facebook.com/northable.lynkz to find out more about this position!

It wouldn’t be a job advertisement if we didn’t list the attributes we are looking for.

Key strengths you will bring:

  • Knowledge and understanding of working with vulnerable or disabled people.
  • Effective communication and sensitivity with people of all disciplines and cultures.
  • Familiar with Tikanga Māori.
  • Excellent facilitation, planning and time management skills
  • Highly motivated, able to apply creativity and work within a dynamic environment.
  • A good knowledge of Whangarei services, activities and area
  • User of Microsoft Office, Outlook etc.
  • Able to work after hours on occasions (Time in Lieu provided)
  • Current Full Driver’s licence with the ability to drive a 12-seater manual van.
  • Current First Aid Certificate Level 2 (or willingness to acquire)
  • Some artistic or musical ability desirable
  • An understanding of the Enabling Good Lives philosophy, N.Z. Disability Strategy, Treaty of Waitangi, the United Nations Convention on Rights of Persons with Disabilities

Success in this role is about bringing yourself to work and being who you are. We would encourage people with lived experience of disability to apply for this role.

Please request a job application form from Vanessa Jennings. Send the completed the job application form,  CV/Resume and cover letter to vanessa.jennings@northable.org.nz by September 23, 2022.

If you would like to discuss this job, please call us on 09 430 0988 to talk to Terisa or Adam.

Companies that support us

NorthAble relies on the generosity of local businesses and individuals to continue the good work we do.

Below is a list of our supporters.

Lottery Grants Board

Lottery Grants Board

Rothbury Insurance Brokers

A big thanks to Rothbury Insurance Brokers for providing the funding for this website

Rothbury Insurance Brokers
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