2024 Whanake o te Kōpara Applications

Pictured above: Whanake o te Kōpara group of 2022


Mā te huruhuru, ka rere te manu
Adorn the bird with feathers so it can fly

Whanake: to grow, to develop, to move onwards, move upwards.
Kōpara: the bellbird (especially the female bellbird), known for its strong, clear, liquid songs.


WISPA welcome applications from any young women aged 18-24 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!

We intend to select 20 participants in 2024 from all over the motu (especially looking for those outside the main centers, where there are often less programmes on offer). You must be aged 18-24, and not in secondary school/college.

Dates and timing:

Applications close Thursday 6 December 2024, and we will be back in touch with you by Friday 15 December (at the latest). The programme consists of three kanohi ki te kanohi (face to face) weekend wānanga, beginning in February (Te Whanganui a Tara/Wellington), followed by March (Ōtautahi/Christchurch), May (Te Whanganui a Tara/Wellington).

  • Wānanga tuatahi – Friday 9th – Sunday 11th February (Te Wharewaka + NZCIS, Te Whanganui-a-Tara)
  • Wānanga tuarua – Friday 22nd March – Sunday 24th March (Ōtautahi)
  • Wānanga tuatoru – Friday 3rd May – Sunday 5th May (Waihōanga, Ōtaki)

If you are successful, you will be expected to attend all the online and kanohi ki te kanohi (face to face) wānanga. Please, only apply if you can commit to attending all of the programme.


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 six 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
  • Human Centered Design
  • 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
  • Frameworks for understanding wellbeing/hauora
  • Creative problem solving
  • Effective questioning
  • Impact storytelling
  • Developing an action plan

You will also be expected to develop an ‘Action Plan’ and if appropriate 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 potentially pilot this plan during the 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!


The cost of the programme is $1000 + gst – this covers all travel, accommodation and kai for the three wānanga + resources and merch!  We do understand that cost is a barrier for many people to participate in professional and personal development programmes, so we are also offering at least five scholarships to make the programme free of charge.

You can select from the following options when you complete your application form (this will be kept completely confidential)

  • I would like to be considered for a scholarship
  • I, or the organisation I work for, can be invoiced for $1,000 + gst to cover the cost of my attendance within the programme.

Please get in touch if you have any questions about the cost – we do not want it to be a barrier, but also want to create a more sustainable programme that can be run for generations of young women to come!

Apply Now by 6 December 2023!

Application form

Email address for questions: merran@womeninsport.org.nz

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