Margie Dennis (Trustee, People Motivator)
Having lived in Pakistan and Afghanistan for 18 years of my working life, I am well aware of the desperate situations that force people to flee their homelands and become refugees. Knowing how strange it felt to be landed in situations where I felt utterly out of my depth, I can empathize with refugees arriving here and not knowing how to do anything. I am also aware that not all housing available in our city is suitable and it was this situation into which God spoke clearly about us providing a warm, dry home for refugee families and thereafter establishing a relationship with the family.
Anne Cleland (Trustee, Chairperson)
I am a nurse but in my spare time over the last few years I have enjoyed helping Kevin renovate some houses. We began to feel that God wanted to use our housing renovating/real-estate knowledge and people skills, for His purposes. We did the Red Cross volunteer training course, and before we knew it we were in boots and all, assisting in the setup of this Trust to provide good rental homes for refugees.
Victoria Zhou (Trustee, Secretary)
I am both a trustee and the secretary for AHT. I got involved with the Trust after observing refugee families in my local community struggle to access and understand the New Zealand education system. I have a background in education, and I am involved with learners with additional needs. I hope to be able to help some of our volunteers 'connect the dots' for some of the refugee families we work with.
Audrey Shepherd (Trustee, Property Manager)
I have been a member of PNCBC for many years and am a retiree with some experience of rental properties. I see my role with AHT as a way to show a little of God's love to the refugee community.
Kevin Cleland (Trustee)
I like adding value to properties, taking a property that is unloved and making it a home. Along the way I have learnt (and still learning) some ways to negotiate the real-estate market. I do this for my day job and I am really enjoying applying these skills to our work on the Agapanthus Housing Trust. Seeing the families focus on settling into Palmerston North and knowing that they are better able to do this from a starting point of living in a nice solid and warm home is very satisfying.
Bruce Christie (Trustee, Property Manager)
I was a Massey University academic for 20 years and for the last 19 years have been self employed in horticultural research, consulting plus landscape and building/property maintenance.
Margaret Rollinson (Committee Chairperson)
I have been involved with people from other cultures most of my life so understand some of the difficulties that new immigrants to NZ experience. I was always interested in what AHT was doing and regularly visited the family that moved into the Trusts first home. I became a committee member in September 2018 and assist with the administration of the Trust.
Alessia James (Committee Treasurer)
I joined the AHT team in 2020. I have worked in finance since 2003 and felt I could offer my skills in this area when the call was made for the trust Treasurer. I remember Margie sharing her “agapanthus” vision a few years prior, and I felt a strong sense that the vision would come to fruition. I am privileged to be on this team.