• Johnsonville, Wellington
  • 04 461 6318
  • office@pada.nz

Ngā Kaiārahi | Our Board

Our Board of Trustees represent the length and breadth of Aotearoa New Zealand

  • Leigh Bredenkamp – PADA Chair – Director, e-Borne solutions – Te Whanganui-a-Tara | Wellington
  • Joanne Rama – PADA Kuia – RcompN, RM, and Pregnancy and parenting educator at ADHB and Kaitiaki Whakawhānau Māori, for Ngāti Whātua, Tāmaki Makaurau | Auckland
  • Bice Awan – Secretary – Former CE of Skylight and other senior positions – Te Whanganui-a-Tara | Wellington
  • Brendon Smith – Kidz Need Dadz – Tāmaki Makaurau | Auckland
  • Carrie Cornsweet Barber – Director, Clinical Psychology Training School of Psychology, University of Waikato
  • Clare Barnett -M.Couns (Hons), P.G.Cert.Prof.Supervision, R.M, R.Comp.N, B.A, C.T.T – Waikato
  • Dr Mathanki Vivekananda GP, BSc, MBChB – Te Whanganui-a-Tara | Wellington
  • Elizabeth Tinkler, BSC, BCA, CA – Te Whanganui-a-Tara | Wellington
  • Rona Carroll – Conveynor of Clinical Advisory Board – GP – Te Whanganui-a-Tara | Wellington

Leigh Bredenkamp, PADA Chair, Te Whanganui-a-Tara | Wellington

As a communications professional, I welcome the opportunity to further promote the mental health of women and men during the time when a family welcomes a new baby into their lives. Through PADA, I will continue to work to strengthen awareness of mental health issues which can affect families.

I believe the health and wellbeing of whānau of all cultures, ethnicities, religions and compositions is crucial for society to thrive. And for families to thrive, communities need to be educated, supportive and well resourced.

Joanne Rama, PADA Kuia, Tāmaki Makaurau | Auckland

  • Ko Joanne Rama taku ingoa
  • Ko Pirongia taku Maunga
  • Ko waipapa taku awa
  • Ko kahotea taku marae
  • Ko Ngati Hinetu taku hapu
  • Ko Ngati Apakura taku iwi
  • Nga mihi mahana ki a koutou

I am the partner of John, mother of 10, godmother of 2, and Nanny Jo to 12 mokopuna. I am a daughter, sister, aunty, and cousin to many.

I graduated as a registered nurse in 1990, and as a midwife in 1992. I was one of the first LMC Māori Midwives to practice in south Auckland and spent 18 years providing care for Māori whānau, during this time I was a founding member of Putea o Pua trust that created what is now know as Turuki Health Care in Mangere. I also helped establish Nga Maia which is the National Māori midwives organisation.

My passion was and still is to restore traditional Māori birth knowledge and wisdom to whānau. My other passion is Maternal Mental Health. I have lived experience with perinatal depression as do my daughters and nieces.

I also work as a alcohol and drug professional at the social detox at The Auckland City Mission, I contract to ADHB to provide community, pregnancy and parenting programmes and I also have a contract with Whai Maia to provide facilitation for a kaupapa Māori pregnancy and parenting programme. I am excited about supporting PADA to continue shining the light on the dark little corner of Maternal Mental Health.

Bice Awan, Secretary, Te Whanganui-a-Tara | Wellington

As Skylight founder/CE and past Mental Health Commissioner, I was touched by the need for services to support those where being pregnant and facing parenthood can be difficult. Perinatal mental health was of particular interest to me as it appeared there was no consistency of services.

As a national body, PADA can work with leaders to make a difference to the quality of lives for infants, parents, family/whanau and all those connected with them. I bring this expertise, together with executive leadership and governance experience to PADA to work with the passionate and capable team.

Brendon Smith, Tāmaki Makaurau | Auckland

As a new Dad, working full time, Brendon was struggling while trying to help his wife and two young babies.  He sank into depression soon after taking over as ‘at-home dad’ and reached out for help.

There wasn’t much. Having been to antenatal classes, he’d heard the term postnatal depression, but didn’t understand it. He didn’t like going to work and didn’t want to see friends.

Brendon began recovering when he found a Father and Child magazine and soon become a support worker for other dads. He runs a DadzKare support group in Auckland and helped develop the Why Dads? resource for new or expecting couples. He is now CEO of Kidz Need Dadz NZ.

Carrie Cornsweet Barber, Ph.D., Waikato

I was working as a child clinical psychologist when, after two miscarriages, I was 26 weeks into my third pregnancy and finally feeling comfortable, like this one might be ok… then I started having contractions, and ended up in the hospital, and then on bed rest at home (out in the country, alone) for two months.

It all turned out ok. My son decided to stay in there as long as possible, and eventually had to be extracted by caesarean, but it was the first step on my path toward an interest in helping other women coping with stress and distress during pregnancy and in early parenting.

I am now a Senior Lecturer at the University of Waikato, training aspiring psychologists, and working on developing and researching tools and strategies to help new parents cope with the changes and challenges they face.

Clare Barnett, Waikato

  • Tēnā koutou katoa
  • Ko Kapukataumahaka te Māunga
  • Ko Mata-Au te Awa
  • Ko Waterman te Waka,
  • Ko Terpstra tōku tupuna Tatimana, ko Moorhouse tōku tupuna Ingarihi
  • Ko Otepoti te kainga tuatahi engari nō Kirikiriroa ahau inianei..
  • Ko Clare Barnett tōku ingoa.
  • Nō reira, tēnā koutou, tēnā koutou, tēnā koutou katoa.

My passion for maternal and family mental well being started with the story of how the rhesus factor affected my mother’s birthing history, and my own birth. This thread continued in my nursing where I first noticed the stigma of mental health compared with how we talk about physical health.

Working as a midwife also gave me greater insight into how maternal well being affects family and baby well being, and the vital role we all play in supporting women and families as they navigate pregnancy, birthing and parenting.  I now weave these understandings into my role as a counselor, specializing in supporting women and families through perinatal distress, and in my education support of student midwives at WINTEC.

I am delighted to be on the PADA Board. I have previously been involved in PADA education and advisory support and totally believe in the strategic importance of the work PADA does within Aotearoa/New Zealand. I am in awe of what this organisation has managed to achieve in such a short time, with a typical Kiwi ‘can do’ attitude on limited resources.

PADA’s strong leadership team, ability to gather expertise in the area of perinatal mental health, and commitment to debunk mental health stigma’s and to break-through information and resource barriers is the reason I choose to give my time and energy to the work they do.

Dr Mathanki Vivekananda, Te Whanganui-a-Tara | Wellington

I graduated from Auckland Medical school in 2013 and worked my junior doctor years in beautiful Rotorua. I then took 3 months off clinical medicine and spent time in Kenya teaching English at a rural primary school.

Following this, I moved to Wellington and completed further training in psychiatry for a few years. I now work in General Practice in Newtown, Wellington and absolutely love my job. I work with people from many different cultural backgrounds. I am a new mother to my gorgeous son and motherhood has given me an invaluable amount of knowledge and understanding when it comes to maternal health as well as babies and toddlers in general.

I have a strong passion for mental health and I am thrilled to be on the PADA Board.

Elizabeth Tinkler, Te Whanganui-a-Tara | Wellington

I am a chartered accountant currently working in the insurance industry with previous experience in professional services, construction as well as not for profits.

I have recently become a parent and when the opportunity to join the PADA board presented itself I could not think of a better way to use my skills to give back to the community. It wasn’t until I decided to start my own family that I realised how common miscarriage was and how little it is still talked about. Starting a family for some people can be a longer journey than others and even once you are successful the anxiety, stress and even depression can continue.

I believe it is important that parents have access to appropriate information and support for mental health and wellbeing which is why I am pleased to be involved with PADA to help fulfil the organisation’s purpose.

Rona Carroll, Te Whanganui-a-Tara | Wellington, Conveynor of Clinical Advisory Board

I am a youth health GP working at student health at Victoria University, Wellington.  My special interests in this role are mental health, sexual health and transgender healthcare.

I am also a parent of three children and have spent many years supporting parents with breastfeeding.  The more breastfeeding support I did, the more I saw the close interaction with mental health, and these interests combined to lead me down the path of learning more about maternal and infant health.  I completed a postgraduate certificate in perinatal mental health and trained as a circle of security facilitator.

I see a need for more education and understanding about perinatal mental health in health professionals and I am proud to be part of PADA who are continuously striving to achieve this.