Kia ora! Here’s a little bit about us:

With its head office in Hamilton, the Young Workers Resource Centre (YWRC) is a non-profit organisation founded September 3, 1993. We proudly lead the way in New Zealand employment rights for young workers, because they’re the group most exploited. For that reason, we provide our employment support to anyone under 35 for FREE!

A part of what we do is help rangatahi experiencing mistreatment at work. Usually this starts with an employee getting in touch via the Get Help section of our website. Then we learn more about the young person’s employment issue and talk them through the options. We want to enable young workers to make informed decisions about their own employment.

Sometimes we can solve a problem with a couple of conversations on the phone and an email. Other times we’ll suggest a meeting so we can get to the bottom of things. There’s no one way of coming to the rescue. Every case and situation is unique!

The other key service we offer is the delivery of employment education workshops specifically designed for those in, or about about to go into early employment experiences.

YWRC education comes in the form of a 50-minute, interactive workshop, with activity book for rangatahi entering, or about to enter the workforce.

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Our Team

Tony Stevens

General Manager

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Tony is a passionate advocate for justice, equity, and fair opportunities for all workers. As well as having served as a past Manager of the YWRC, and organiser for the NZNO and FIRST Union, Tony has also been involved in Stand Up, the youth union movement. He believes that we must act now to preserve the planet and the future for our upcoming generations.

As well as being a bit of a revolutionist at heart, Tony is the dad of two young humans, and a current Psychology student at the University of Waikato. He has a keen interest in health, and sport psychology.

Caitlin Wilson

Help Centre Coordinator & Assistant Manager

Caitlin Wilson

Caitlin has spent the last four years with the Member Support Centre of First Union providing support to First Union members; she is also one of three co-convenors for Stand Up, the youth union movement. Caitlin holds a Bachelor of Education (Primary) and two PGDips, one in Education and one in educational psychology.

Ongoing Education and learning is a core value for Caitlin and she is passionate about facilitating young workers to understand and assert their rights and addressing legislation and practice around dealing with workplace bullying.

Charmaine Heyes

Young Worker Advocate

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Charmaine is a proud English born, Ngā Puhi descendant. She has a strong admiration for fairness and justice, with a drive to empower others. Charmaine is completing a Bachelor of Laws at the University of Waikato. She has humbly represented her peers in various executive roles including Te Hunga Roia Maori o Aotearoa (The New Zealand Maori Law Society).

Along with a knack for advocating with integrity, Charmaine served as a Volunteer Fire-Fighter which is a testament to her passion for hands on community based initiatives. Charmaine takes joy in physical activities, especially when paired with travel. “Nothing like the challenge of a good maunga!”

Stephanie Balsom

Education Coordinator – Waikato

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Stephanie moved her way up the west coast from Taranaki and found herself in Kirikiriroa. Although her studies majored in Performance Art and Contemporary Dance, she has been able to transition those skills into being a choreographer for the theatre community here. With this, Stephanie has had the opportunity to work alongside people from all different backgrounds and abilities.

Educating our youth on Employment Rights isn’t the only thing Stephanie advocates for. A huge believer in self-care and seeking help when needed, she knows we must make health and mental care more accessible to everybody for a better future.

OIiver Cull

Education Coordinator – Auckland

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Oliver is a trained secondary school teacher with an academic background in sociology and geography. With an MA in Human Geography, Oliver’s research has addressed recent forms of worker organising.

Oliver carries a belief in social change close to his heart, practicing this through his involvement in activism and teaching. And most recently, Oliver has been involved in Auckland Action Against Poverty, and outside of the YWRC continues to tutor young people while pursuing interests in health, science fiction and electronic music.

Matariki Roche

Communications Coordinator

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Matariki Roche, Ngāti Raukawa/Ngāti Huri, was raised on Waiheke Island Surrounded by a tight knit community abundant in advocates and agitators. She pursued her passion for te reo Māori and social change at Victoria University where she studied Te Reo Māori, Māori Studies and Sociology.

After uni Matariki moved to The Mighty Tron. closer to where her tūpuna and whānau are from. Matariki’s leadership and governance roles include being the first elected youth representative for Waiheke Island onto the Auckland Council Youth Advisory Panel, establishing the island’s youth council.

Past Staff (Click to Drop Down)
  • Mel Martin (2014-2022)
  • Jono Freebairn (2021)
  • Kauri Tearaura (2020)
  • Julia Wikeepa (2019)
  • Zanian Steele (2017)
  • Erina Stockman (2016)
  • Cheyenne Scown
  • Kylie Zinsli
  • Linda Radosinksa
  • Ana Ngamoki
  • Thomas Stubbs
  • Sonya Church
  • Rose Fitzell
  • Jenny Patching
  • Sue Kennedy
  • Ivan Hodgetts
  • Mark Smith
  • Joseph Rao
  • Julie Poupard
  • Robert Parton
  • Catherine Hodges (1993)

Governance Board

Arnold Andrews


about us - vice chairperson

Arnold works for the HCC and specialises in Events. His work bases him at venues like the Claudelands Events Centre, FMG Stadium and Seddon Park. Arnold has a Masters in Business Management and has involved himself with projects ranging from mental health to rights of young workers. Being a fitness enthusiast, he likes to spend his leisure days running half marathons.

Zoe Port

Vice Chairperson

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Dr. Zoe Port is the Deputy Programme Director of the Bachelor of Business degree at Massey University in Auckland, and is fiercely passionate about ensuring representation for youth in the workplace. She also holds the role of Research Officer on the Healthy Work Project, which develops interventions to reduce exposure to work-related psychosocial hazards in small and medium-sized organisations. 

Lucretia de Pina


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Aldrin Kaiser Arguelles

Board Member

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Aldrin is an experienced senior leader who has been in the health and disability sector for over a decade. He brings a strategic and operational lens to drive YWRC’s vision and mission. He is passionate about youth empowerment, mental health and social justice.

He currently works as an Operations Manager in a for-purpose organisation that supports people with disabilities. Aldrin holds a degree in Health Sciences and a number of postgraduate qualifications in Mental Health (PGCertHSc) and Applied Management (PGDip AM).

In his own time, he loves socials and food during his leisure days. He also enjoys outdoor adventures and travels both within the motu and overseas.

Tanya Ewertowska

Board Member

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Tanya Ewertowska is a doctoral candidate, research and teaching assistant in employment relations, at Auckland University of Technology. She uses creative and qualitative methods to carry out research with young workers on their experiences at work, including non-standard employment, discrimination, and resistance. She is also the U35 and hourly paid/fixed term delegate at the AUT branch of the Tertiary Education Union.

She believes the mahi of the incredible staff at the Young Workers’ Resource Centre is unique and invaluable in empowering and supporting youth in the world of work – often the most challenging part of their adult lives.

Madi Lowe

Board Member

who we are - kauri tearaura educator

As a graduate of the University of Waikato with a bachelor of Business Management Madi is passionate about business, sustainability, money, humans and employment rights, especially youth rights. During daylight hours Madi is currently employed by Tuatahi Fibre as an Account Manager. In her personal time Madi can be found hiking, working out at the gym, completing never ending renovations to her whare and eating anything that has a hint of caramel associated.

Heather Lowery-Kappes

Board Member

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Heather has a Master of Counselling, a Post Grad Diploma in Professional Supervision, a Graduate Diploma in Career Development, and a Graduate Diploma in Human Resources Management. She is currently President and Fellow of the Career Development Association of New Zealand (CDANZ) and registered with NZAC. Heather works in careers at the University of Waikato and in private career practice. Her background is in human resources, training for employment, development, and supported employment. Heather’s passion is helping people successfully navigate the world of work.

Past Chairpersons (Click to Drop Down)
  • Melissa Goodman (2019-2021)
  • Jason Sebestian (2017-2019)
  • Daniel Marshall (2014-2017)
  • Megan Morris ( 2010-2014)
  • Bob Anderson (1993-2010)

Donate to the YWRC


For the price of a cup of coffee, we can make a tangible difference in the lives of
NZ rangatahi, who are some of our country’s most exploited and lowest paid employees…

Get Free Employment Help

Get in touch with the Young Workers Resource Centre if you or someone you know is experiencing issues/mistreatment in the workplace.