Rez was born in a refugee camp in Pakistan on 11 August 1991, as her family escaped persecution in their homeland of Kurdistan. She was awarded the Young New Zealander of the Year 2017 for her services to human rights and was a Women of Influence Finalist 2017. She is a lawyer and advocate for human rights, gender equality, and refugee rights.
Bilal is originally from Afghanistan but has been living in New Zealand for the past 18 years. He has recently graduated from the University of Auckland with a bachelor’s degree in Psychology and he currently work two jobs - as youth worker for NZ Red Cross and as a behaviour therapist with children on the autism spectrum.
Nosia, a former refugee, was born in Burundi, Central East Africa. Currently, she is a law student at the University of Auckland. Nosia finds it rejuvenating waking to an early morning workout at the gym. She enjoys meeting new people and learning about different cultures.
Grace currently works as an administrator in a counselling firm in West Auckland. Throughout her Psychology degree, she was heavily involved in working with at-risk youth in her community. This, combined with a yearlong internship with mentoring organisation MATES, fueled a passion for youth mentoring.
As former refugee, Amir entered New Zealand at age seven after spending several months in a refugee camp in Thailand. Currently, Amir is a student at Massey University studying Economics and Finance. Amir's passion is in Economic Development and helping under-developed nations lift its people out of poverty.
Chloe-Rose is an Immigration Lawyer and has done some youth advocacy work overseas. She loves meeting people from different parts of the world and is really inspired by the courage and strength of refugees.
Eric is a firm believer in people. He graduated with a BSc in Psychology and is currently working as a HR Consultant at the University of Auckland. He is originally from Malaysia but has been living in New Zealand for the past 8 years. He enjoys travelling, running, and having deep meaningful conversations with people. He believes that education is the most powerful weapon for changing the world.
Daughter of a former Cambodian refugee, Leanne has witnessed first-hand the difficulties of resettling to a foreign country. She therefore wishes to help other refugee background individuals overcome resettlement struggles and to empower them to reach their full potential. With a conjoint degree in Marketing and Public Relations, Leanne hopes to create and share stories that can impact meaningful change in the world.
Vaash is originally from Fiji and has been living in New Zealand for the past 9 years. She has a Bachelor of Arts and a Bachelor of Laws from the University of Auckland and is currently working at a law firm in Auckland. She was previously a mentor with Empower before joining the wider team. She is passionate about gender and racial equality, LGBTQI+ rights, and raising mental health awareness.