Birthright Canterbury Staff Members
Rhodora Sagles - Manager
Rhodora started at Birthright in March 2015. She brings years of experience from working with other not-for-profit groups here in Christchurch and the Philippines. She has also volunteered in pacific nations such as Vanuatu and Kiribati. She is excited to support and build on the vision of Birthright, empowering families and children to be nurtured, resilient and inspired.
Desiree Patchett - Programme Support and Volunteer Coordinator
Desiree enjoys working for Birthright because of the variety of work she does; the people she comes across each day; and the teamwork. She believes that all children should be given opportunities to succeed. Multi-tasking, a passion for children’s welfare and a sense of humour are all qualities that Desiree believes are essential for her role.
Janette Branson - Social Worker
Janette is a registered social worker, with a Bachelor of Social Work. Before starting as a Birthright Canterbury field worker, Janette spent eight years working in the mental health sector, where she continues to work as a clinician. She enjoys working with Birthright Canterbury families and supporting them to become resilient, healthy and happy members of society. In her spare time, Janette enjoys hanging out with friends, taking walks along the beach and going to the gym. She is also a mum to two teenagers and a kitten.
Gloria Medina - Social Worker
Gloria is a social worker. originally from Chile, South America. She has been living in New Zealand since 2003 and studied for a Bachelor of Social Work at the University of Canterbury. Before starting at Birthright Canterbury Gloria spent almost two years working for Women's Refuge in Wellington. She enjoys working at Birthright Canterbury because she has the chance to walk alongside clients, supporting them to improve their lives. Gloria is also a Mum to a toddler. In her spare time her family enjoys going for walks, spending time with friends and family and travelling to discover new places.
Christine Muff – Ashburton Field Worker
Christine started as a Volunteer Family Visitor in 2003 and became a Field Worker in 2008. She has always worked with people and, having been a single parent for a short time, knew how difficult it could be without support, so she felt she could “give something of herself” to the role. She has studied social work at the University of Otago on a part-time basis. What she most enjoys about working for Birthright is the families. “They all bring something of themselves that warms your heart. I enjoy seeing people gain confidence and grow within themselves to achieve independence and goals.”
Ruth Logan – Ashburton Volunteer Family Visitor
Ruth has volunteered for Birthright since 1994. One of the reasons she joined was because she enjoys working with children. Family is very important to her and, as a mother and grandmother, she is always interested in what is happening for them and her Birthright families. Ruth has also trained as a budget advisor and worked as a kindergarten teacher.
Lyn Stuart – Ashburton Volunteer Family Visitor
As a volunteer, Lyn enjoys meeting the parents and children of Birthright Canterbury. After retiring in 2013, Lyn wanted to use her time to help others in the community. She was previously the financial officer for Safer Ashburton, a community trust running social work programmes in Mid Canterbury. In her spare time, Lyn enjoys spending time with her family, reading and gardening.
Margaret Haskett – Ashburton Volunteer Family Visitor
Margaret has volunteered for Birthright for about 10 years. She is a mother, grandmother and great-grandmother. She loves seeing the excited faces on children when she takes them their goodie box each month. She is friendly and helpful, and always there to listen and give hugs!
Pat Weir – Ashburton Volunteer Family Visitor
Pat has been involved with Birthright for more than 25 years. She enjoys visiting families on a regular basis to see how they are. In her spare time, Pat likes to knit, garden, do craft, write letters to friends outside of Ashburton, travel, spend time with her family, volunteer for other organisations and learn about other people’s cultures.
Zivanah Keen – Christchurch Fundraiser Volunteer
Zivanah has been volunteering at Birthright since April 2016. Raised by a single parent, Zivanah understands the importance of the support that Birthright Canterbury provides. She enjoys meeting other volunteers and knowing that she's making a difference. In her spare time, Zivanah loves reading a good book.