I would like to take this opportunity to thank you and to introduce myself as well. My name is Mark Wager and I’m the new President of the WRRA. My wife Maria and I moved into Waiatarua two months ago. If you are wondering how much I know about Waiatarua, the answer is very little but what I have quickly learned is about the type of community we have moved into. It’s a community that cares. It cares about the area, the environment and about each other.
In our first week, my wife and I had been invited to not one but two community dinners, one being the Waiatarua community dinner held on the second Friday of every month (see ad on page 2 of this newsletter) and the other was the dinner for the residents of Atarua Gardens. We have spoken more to our neighbours here within the first few days than we have during the past ten years at our last home.
On top of that both my wife and I fell victim to covid in August only to receive emails from our neighbours including people we hadn’t even met yet offering assistance. It’s this type of community spirit that is often mentioned but is very rarely seen in action which is why I already believe Waiatarua is a very special place to live.
I saw that community spirit in action recently at the Meet the Candidates night which was held at the Waiatarua Hall on Wednesday 28th September (see photo left). At the event, residents had the opportunity to present the prospective candidates for the Local Body Elections with questions and while not everyone would have received the answers they were looking for, it was pleasing to see the passion and how candidates make themselves available.
During my career I’ve worked a lot with councils, government agencies and politicians especially during my time as the National Manager of the Tribunals Unit in New Zealand. The key lesson I learned was just how influential a small group of passionate and organised people can be. I’ve seen change happen on a national level as a direct result of a small group of people wanting to see change. This is why I’ve volunteered to become President because I’ve seen what a wonderful area we are living in and I know I can add value by making things better.
So a big thank you to everyone for making my wife and me so welcome and I hope to repay that kindness by adding value to Waiatarua. If you ever have any questions or you want to make me aware of anything please feel free to contact me on 021 354 831 or email email@example.com