Esther | Manukau

“Talofa. My name is Esther and I live out at Manukau, Totara Heights. I guess a sense of accomplishment is what I did this morning; giving a bit of my personal time to contribute to the Tāmaki community.

This morning there was a session with the Mafutaga Samoa, which is the Samoan community within this area, and coming to spend time with them, and also to do some exercise in Zumba. I’m not a professional Zumba instructor, but I know with a bit of music and a bit of movement and exercise, that I can actually do something for our elderly, and a lot of them are about 60, 70. So, I’m sure that’s an accomplishment in itself, to know that I’ve come out, and I’ve given my time in something that I really enjoy. Giving back to our mamas and papas, and sort of encouraging a lot of our other elderly people at home. Don’t be stuck at home looking after your grandchildren, but also have time for yourself. Come out with the others in your community, where you feel refreshed, and just know what’s happening in your local community.

I think it’s really important; health and wellness. For myself, I know as you get older, you do feel the difference in your body. I am the president of the New Zealand Federation of Body Building, under the IFBB, which is 199 countries throughout the world, established in 1946. So, you know, you’ve got to walk the talk, I may not look like a bodybuilder, but I’m good in the admin and management side. But I’m here to be an advocate and to promote a lot of our Pacific bodybuilders, and our New Zealand bodybuilders overseas. But for myself, also to be around for my mokopuna, for my granddaughter, I’ve got to ensure that I’m actually healthy as well. So, it’s a win-win situation, when I’m out here trying to do Zumba and exercising with everyone and staying healthy.  Look out for what you eat. You know what they say, what you eat is what you are. I think it’s a true statement, but sometimes we’ve just got to walk the talk, rather than talk the talk, and that’s what I did this morning. 

I was born and bred in Kingsland, so I’m a town girl. New Zealand-born. I’m a grandmother. I’m 50+, so I spent most of my life being a solo parent just bringing up my son. I work for ASA Foundation, which is a charitable organisation, and our vision is enhancing lives, and our vision is to capitalise our capability building for a lot of organisations and also businesses throughout New Zealand, but also abroad. So, it’s about working locally, but thinking globally, and it’s something that I’m very passionate about. My background is in finance, as a qualified financial broker. So, also trying to adapt with a lot of the legal changes within the community, and with my professional job, but I also love doing my community work, and that’s one of the reasons that brought me here this morning, to give my service and my time to our mamas and papas.”

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