2021 Young Women’s Leadership Programme

Whanake o te Kōpara


Applications are open for a new Leadership Development programme, Whanake o te Kōpara, being led by The Shift Foundation (Shift) and Women in Sport Aotearoa (WISPA). Both organisations advocate for equity in the physical activity space (sport, exercise, recreation, fitness, play) for women and girls, but also for other groups who may be missing out on the benefits of movement! 

Applications close Monday 1st March 2021.  


Shift and WISPA welcome applications from any young women (or those who identify as female or non-binary) aged 19-25 who are passionate about the role physical activity can play in supporting wellbeing, however we are really keen to support young women who are currently not in leadership positions and/or who don’t get access to these types of opportunities. It may be that you are currently unemployed, studying or working in a job that doesn’t align with your passion in the physical activity space, or maybe you live in a rural or remote area? Whatever the case, if you are excited by this then apply!


Please see the following timeline for the application process:

Applications open: Friday 12th February 
Applications close: Monday 1st March
Panel decision making: Week beginning of Monday 8th March 2021
Notification of outcome: Monday 15th March 2021


Please see the following young women’s programme timeline:

First online hui: Late March (likely 2.5hours evening or weekend)
Wānanga 1: Friday 9th – Sunday 11 April 2021, Orongomai Marae, Upper Hutt.
Second and third online hui: May (allow 5 hours in the month) 
Wānanga 2: Friday 11th – 13th June 2021, Wāihōanga River Lodge, Kāpiti.
Fourth and fifth online hui: July (allow 5 hours in the month)
Wānanga 3: Friday 20th – 22nd August 2021, Wāihōanga River Lodge, Kāpiti.
Sixth online hui: September (allow 2.5 hours in the month)
Sport NZ Women + Girls Summit 2021: October (details to be confirmed) 


If you are successful, you will be expected to attend all the online and kanohi ki te kanohi (face to face) wānanga. Obviously, we understand that things crop up but please only apply if you believe, at this stage, you will be available to attend all of the programme.


Shift and WISPA deeply believe in the power and importance of co-design, therefore the following list is an indication of the type of topics and content that may be covered as part of the programme. Successful applicants will be asked for feedback and thoughts as the course is designed and delivered over the eight months.

  • Ko wai au? Who am I? – Values, whakapapa, strengths and passions
  • Understanding systems change/systems thinking (eco-systems)
  • Empowerment – what is it? How do you experience it?
  • Te Tiriti o Waitangi/The Treaty of Waitangi – kaupapa maori approach
  • Human Centered Design – practical application through the design and delivery of the wānanga (similar to a Shift Jam/Shift Challenge)
  • Courageous Conversations
  • Allies/Building relationships
  • AKO – opportunity for participants to share skills and learn from one another
  • Reflective practice
  • Bringing Te Aō Māori to life (in practical ways)
  • Frameworks for understanding wellbeing/hauora
  • Developing an action plan

You will also be expected to develop an ‘Action Plan’ and pilot it as a key part of your participation in this programme. You will be given a frame to work from and support to develop your plan (in an area or on an idea that is meaningful to you!). In true action learning style, you will plan, deliver, reflect, iterate and pilot this plan during the programme. With full implementation post programme. Don’t panic – it can be as big or small as your heart desires – the key element here is to put your learning into practice and be part of changing the system to work better for the groups/communities you are passionate about supporting!


We understand that cost is a barrier for many young people to participate in professional and personal development programmes, therefore we have created a ‘social ticketing’ model. You can select from the following options when you complete your application form (this will be kept completely confidential).

  • I currently cannot contribute financially to this programme
  • This is currently a challenge for me/the organisation I work for, but I would like to contribute a koha of $X
  • I, or the organisation I work, for can be invoiced for $1,500 as a contribution towards the cost of the programme


For more information on timings, expectations, content and to apply click here.

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