One of the largest Maori health providers in the Eastern Bay of Plenty, Te Tohu o Te Ora o Ngati Awa, recently held a special event for the local Kaumatua (Maori elders) offering pampering, fun activities and a shared morning tea and lunch. However, it was the arrival of the Mānuka gift packs which caused the most excitement with the guests.
Nursing student, Jenna Wharewera, is one of 24 students enrolled on the “Bridging to Nursing” course at Te Whare Wānanga o Awanuiārangi, an important pathway to a career with Te Tohu o Te Ora o Ngati Awa. Breaking into four groups of six, the students offered a range of activities during the Kaumatua Day event.
“Ours was all about pampering our Kaumatua,” said Jenna. “We gave hand and shoulder massages and a gift pack with Melora Mānuka throat lozenges, Mānuka Secrets Mānuka serum, Melora Mānuka oil as well as homemade bath bombs and moisturising creams.”
Over 30 Kaumatua participated in the special event held in their honour with other activities including line dancing and singing as well as songs and face painting for the children. .
But it was the arrival of the Melora and Mānuka Secrets Mānuka products for the gift packs, supplied by New Zealand Mānuka Group, which caused the most excitement, said Jenna. “When we were setting up, people spotted our gift packs and everyone was really excited and asking how they could get them.”
New Zealand Mānuka Group is a loyal and dedicated supporter of our local communities. As Te Tohu o Te Ora o Ngati Awa is an important and valued provider of Social Services and Health Services through the Ministry of Health and District Health Board, we appreciated the opportunity to be a part of this wonderful community activity.
Speaking at a marketing professionals meeting in Tauranga recently, the enduring message Sharan Caskey left with the guests is Phil’s desire to make the world a better place not only for his children and grandchildren but the wider community too. In a world of businesses driven by profits, guests were impressed to hear from a large organisation driven by integrity and transparency.
“Phil wants to make a real difference and he believes a better way of doing business is through empowering people to create a better life for themselves,” explained Sharan Caskey, Operations Manager, Seaweed and Oils from New Zealand Mānuka Group.
It was a surprising message coming from a major shareholder and director of one of the regions’ largest and fastest growing Mānuka businesses. But it was an important one that hit home with everyone in the room.
Invited to speak at an event organized and run by the Tauranga marketing professionals group, MOPED, Sharan Caskey represented New Zealand Mānuka Group in telling their story of growing a business from the ground up, into the highly successful, award-winning organisation that it is today.
“New Zealand Mānuka Group is built on product, business partners and vertical integration,” explained Caskey. “Phil is the visionary but I’m the workhorse – I set up infrastructure, systems and organize people.”
“The reason we have been able to grow at speed is because, in his mind, Phil sees no barriers and quite often he will just get out and do it himself. People see this and want to be part of his vision too.”
Describing their highly collaborative approach to doing business, one of their founding aspects has been in establishing transparent, 10-year profit sharing contracts with their landowners and beekeepers which see each sharing 35% of the gross profit.
As Caskey explained, “The difference to these people’s lives is absolutely enormous. We had one landowner who had made only $7,000 in a year from a previous beekeeper dropping 600 hives on their land. In our first year working with them, we dropped 400 hives on the land and paid their 35% share which worked out to be $143,000.”
Sharing their stories of the land and their people has been the focus of New Zealand Mānuka Group’s marketing efforts to date. Attendees left the event feeling heartened and inspired that the world can be a better place and our businesses can make a difference.