About Thriving Southland

Who is Thriving Southland?

Thriving Southland is a community-led group with a vision to create a prosperous Southland, healthy people, healthy environment from the mountains to the sea. 

By working together, Thriving Southland’s communities will create a better future for all by protecting Southland’s prosperity, heritage, environment and health. 

What is a Catchment Group?

A group of people who identify with a geographical area, usually based on a river or lake catchment, working together to take action towards a common vision.

Why are Catchment Groups so great? 

When farmers and the community get together to discuss local issues and opportunities, great things can happen. Contact our catchment group coordinators to find out more.

How can Thriving Southland help me? 

We are here to connect you with members of the farming community and to support you on this journey. We provide free resources, support great events and empower you to take ownership of local issues so they can be addressed and resolved. Our dedicated team of coordinators is here to encourage and develop groups, get projects off the ground and inspire community action. 
Thank you to all the contributors to Thriving Southland, including the farmers and community members who are part of Catchment Groups driving change and environmental improvements in their backyards.

Project Team

Richard Kyte

Project Lead
027 298 7786
richard@thrivingsouthland.co.nz

Sandra King

Project Manager
021 488 180
sandra.king@thrivingsouthland.co.nz

Sheree Forsyth

Project Administrator
021 466 700
sheree@thrivingsouthland.co.nz
office@thrivingsouthland.co.nz

Catchment Group Coordinators

Aparima

Aparima

Rachael Verhaegh

Senior Catchment Coordinator
‭021 566 229‬
rachael@thrivingsouthland.co.nz

I’m lucky enough to have grown up on a farm and am passionate about rural life and all aspects of agriculture. Before joining Thriving Southland I was working in Scotland for LIC and prior to this I was a Local Agribusiness Manager for Westpac. Farming is increasingly diversified, and working within the primary sector has provided me with the chance to learn and experience a range of opportunities and challenges. I look forward to working with farmers and catchment groups to drive positive change, sustainability and prosperity

Lower Oreti

Lower Oreti

Sarah Thorne

Catchment Coordinator
‭027 588 5200‬
sarah@thrivingsouthland.co.nz

I love working with Southland's Catchment Groups and all the agencies and people that support them. I put my heart and soul into my work, and love seeing the real and lasting changes we are making across Southland. Southland is an amazing place to live and raise a family that love water like mine do.

Lower Mataura & Waituna

Lower Mataura & Waituna

Sandra Campbell

Catchment Coordinator
‭021 400 431‬
sandra@thrivingsouthland.co.nz

I am a proud country girl, originally coming from a Mataura Island sheep farm, and now farming with my family on our equity partnership dairy farm in South Otago. I have a passion for connecting rural communities and our agricultural industry. I also have a rural banking background, and a strong involvement in our local water catchment group.

Northern Southland & Waiau

Northern Southland & Waiau

Poppy Sparrow

Catchment Coordinator
‭021 399 343‬
poppy@thrivingsouthland.co.nz

I’m originally from Mid-Canterbury, but am now a proud Southlander, farming sheep and beef in Dipton alongside my partner Grant. My background is in business management and graphic design. I have a passion for agriculture and supporting farmers, and being immersed in farming compelled me to get involved with Thriving Southland.

Thriving Southland Board

Ewen Mathieson

Farmer - Dairy, Beef, Sheep
Board Member, Interim Chair

Lynden Prebble

Farmer - Beef, Sheep
Between the Domes Catchment Group, Board Member

Jon Pemberton

Farmer - Dairy, AgProud
Three Rivers Catchment Group
Board Member

Neil Gardyne

Farmer - Beef, Sheep, Cropping
Board Member

John White

Farmer - Dairy
Lower Aparima Catchment Group Board Member

Kate Scott

Environmental
Consultant

Board Member, Vice Chair

Deane Carson

Sheep and Beef Consultant Advisory

Paul Marshall

Farmer - Dairy
Waiau Rivercare Group
Board Member

Andrew Hunt

Fonterra Sustainability Advisory

CURRENT VACANCIES

Click here to view our latest vacancies.

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