The Tawa Team

This is our team of teachers and staff at Educare Tawa. Scroll through to find out more about our teaching team.

Tracy Lambert

Acting Centre Manager
Kia ora koutou, my name is Tracy, I live with my husband and our three teenage sons on the Kapiti Coast, north of Wellington.
I am a fully registered kaiako, graduating in 2003 with a Bachelor of Education. I enjoy study and have since gained a post graduate diploma in Infants and Toddlers and am currently finishing my Masters in ECE.
I feel privileged to be part of the Educare Whānau, working alongside a fantastic team. I'm looking forward to an exciting time ahead.

Jen Dahlberg

Team Leader, Registered Teacher
Kia ora! I’m Jen. I am a qualified early childhood teacher. I live in Whitby with my husband Jeff and our cat Tilly. I have specialised over the years in educating toddlers aged 18 months to 2 and a half years. I am very passionate about teaching this age group. I enjoy contributing to the intellectual, social, emotional and physical development of the children in my care. I am really excited to be working back in Tawa, being part of an awesome team and community. I can’t wait to get to know you all better!

Elinor Blackler

Team Leader, Registered Teacher
My journey in early Childhood Education began as a desire to be the best parent and first teacher I could be to my own two children. Over 20 years later, having gained both my primary and ECE degrees, I enjoy using my knowledge and skills to care for and teach children.
I live locally with my husband and spend as much time as I can with my grandchildren who are all over the North Island.
I believe that children deserve loving, caring, passionate teachers who use any form of pedagogy to achieve the best possible results for children's growth, development and learning.
I am excited to be part of the Educare whānau and am looking forward to getting to know you and your family.

Rachael Porter

Registered Teacher
Hello my name is Rachael. I have been living in Canada for the past 26 years and am now back home. I have been working with children of all ages since my after school job at the age of 13. I love being outdoors and watching children explore their surroundings. I'm passionate about our future adults and want them to thrive with every opportunity. I look forward to making a connection with you all.

Mingming Cong

Registered Teacher
Kia ora, my name is Mingming. I am from China but have been living in New Zealand for about 20 years.
I have fallen deeply in love with this country and its picturesque landscapes and beaches. As well as its open minded, inclusive, enthusiastic and united people.
Working with children has always been my passion. I recently finished my Graduate Diploma of Teaching (ECE) at Te Rito Maioha. I feel honoured to join Educare Tawa and look forward to working collaboratively with the team to build strong, kind and positive relationships with the tamariki and their whanau. And to contribute to the holistic wellbeing and development of our tamariki.

Cathelyn Juanim

Registered Teacher
Kia ora, I'm Cathelyn from the Philippines. I live in Paraparaumu with my husband and my son Gianni.
I have been teaching in Thailand as an early childhood educator for 19 years. My role as a teacher of these young tamariki are to develop positive relationships with children, help them to be good human beings and help them develop their skills.
I am glad to be part of Educare Tawa and I am so excited to be working and collaborating with my co teachers here.

Joleene Eru

Registered Teacher
Kia ora my name is Joleene. I have been working as a ECE teacher for 15 years and I have worked with all ages under 5. My passion is discovering all tamariki as individuals who are competent and confident learners in their own unique way. I love developing partnerships with whānau work alongside them to provide the best learning outcomes with their own personal expertise on their tamati. 
I am a mother of two children and enjoy spending time in the outdoors exploring nature and going on adventures with my family. I am exited to get to know the tamariki here while working alongside the amazing kaiako to provide the best leaning outcomes for everyone.

Benin Kadhim

Registered Teacher
Kia Ora my name is Benin i was born in Saudi Arabia and came to New Zealand when I was one. I believe in giving tamariki opportunities to thrive and become confident and capable ākonga. I know not every child has the same way of learning or is at the same stage. I will help tamariki thrive and become respectful, caring, honest, fair and inclusive ākonga. My mission is to create a learning space that is inclusive of all tangata. A space that celebrates the differences that each tamariki brings. A place where tamariki feel safe and where they can be authentically themselves.

Sisilia Lo'Amanu

Registered Teacher
I look forward to building strong positive relationships with the tamariki and their families which I believe is the key for children’s success.
I am Tongan and currently live in Porirua with my husband and our two children. I have a Bachelor of Education and Teaching in Early Years (0-8)
I am passionate about working with infants and toddlers in which I strongly believe in respectful practice and in creating a calm and enriching environment that allows infants and toddlers to be competent and confident learners.

Hayley Pickering

Provisionally Registered Teacher
Kia ora, my name is Hayley Pickering. I grew up in the northern suburbs of Wellington and currently live with my family in Woodridge. I have worked with children for the last 7 years and was lucky to find my passion within ECE. I am starting my Graduate diploma of Teaching with Te Rito Maioha and look forward to continuing to learn and grow as a teacher. Outside of work I love to read, cook, Zumba and walk my dog. I’m excited to be staying on in the Tipu Room and continuing to build strong relationships with tamariki and their whānau. I am passionate about empowering children to grow and learn and allowing them to flourish as individuals in their first few years with us here at Tawa Educare.

Trish Gibson

Kia ora, I have been a resident of Tawa for the past eighteen years where I live with my partner and teenage daughter, and I also have 3 older children.
I have worked in Early Childhood for over fifteen years and love watching as our children develop their personalities and become more capable and confident as they grow. Seeing the look of excitement on children’s faces as they learn a new skill or discover something that interests them is a real pleasure.
I am looking forward to working closer to home and becoming part of the Educare Tawa family.

Sheilla Navarro

Kia ora, I'm Sheilla from the Philippines. I am passionate about being an educator to the young ones, helping them to develop their skills. I have been teaching in a Kindergarten for 12 years in the Philippines, I love being surrounded by children. I I want to have a positive relationship as an educator to these young tamariki.
I'm happy to be part of the team at Educare Tawa and is an exciting opportunity for me to make connections with the team.

Sarah Spicer

Kia Ora, my name is Sarah, I have worked as a cook/baker for over 20 years, with this experience I have gained a lot of knowledge in food nutrition, dietary needs and food safety. I know the importance of bringing nutritious and filling meals to tamariki so they can enjoy a fun packed day at Educare. In my spare time I love walks with my two dogs, gardening and spending time with whānau and friends. I am looking forward to getting to know all the tamariki and making them delicious kai.