The Hot Pink Walk is Coming! Wednesday 5th October 2022. Find out more on our Fundraising Page.

The Breast Cancer Support Service Tauranga Trust employs support workers who have been through breast cancer themselves and is governed by a wonderful group who give their time, passion and expertise voluntarily.

Meet our Support Team

Ngaire Laker-Metz

Support Worker - Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday
My breast cancer journey began in 1998 and  I remember clearly how shocked and frightened I was when first diagnosed. I also remember how valuable the support I received from  Breast Cancer Support Tauranga was. Family and friends were great, but being able to meet and talk with other women starting treatment and those who were years down the track, looking great, back at work and enjoying life made me realise that I could get through the year of treatment that lay ahead. Now it is time to pay if forward,  and it is wonderful to be working at something I am passionate about. Every day no matter what we are doing we are working to benefit the men and women who have had their world rocked by breast cancer. I love my job!

Melissa Taumoelau

Support Worker - Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday

Talofa Lava! 

In 2019, I was 39 when I felt a pea sized lump in my left breast. I didn't think much of it at the time - I was a busy mum of 3, working full time and like most mums, I put getting this sorted to the bottom of the list. One of my thoughts was 'íts nothing, its probably just a cyst'. After being diagnosed my husband and I wanted a lifestyle change and we moved our family to Mount Mauganui.  I took a Sabbatical when we moved here and I discovered the BCSS.  I felt privileged to have such a beautiful bunch of Wahine carrying positive vibes, support and acknowledgement of what I was going through. I have discovered in my journey a passion for giving back to our community and am looking forward to meeting and helping others within this space.

Kath Hamilton

Administrator- Tuesday & Wednesday

My breast cancer diagnosis was in 2013 and support from this organisation made a big difference to my recovery.  I've worked with BCSS as a support worker and am now working as Administrator due to my own health needs.

Rachel Quin Gilbert

Kia ora. I am thrilled to join the team as the new Manager of BCSS.  I have many years of experience in the not-for-profit space and am excited to bring that knowledge to help make a difference in such a wonderful organisation.  Working with the community is very dear to my heart and I feel very privileged to be part of the Trust and work alongside so many amazing people who are generous and compassionate and genuinely making a difference. Breast cancer has touched those close to me throughout my life and I hope I can help the Trust grow and thrive and ensure that our wonderful service continues to support people who need it the most.  I look forward to what the next year has to bring!

Jill Forlong

Supporter Engagement Worker
After going through breast cancer myself in 2014 and being involved with several large breast cancer fundraisers since then I began work for the Trust in 2017 to assist with the organisation of fundraising events,gaining sponsorship and the management of volunteers.  Having a background in planning and being very community minded I love using my skills in a new positive way to help those going through a difficult time in their lives whilst raising funds to enable the Trust to continue and grow the wonderful services and support they offer.  I am humbled to work for the Trust and be involved with such a fabulous team.

Katie Ross-Williams

Fundraising Co-ordinator
Kia ora koutou, I am excited to join the team as Fundraising Co-ordinator.  I have varied experience working for not for profit organisations and in events, communications and marketing.  Breast cancer has affected many people in my life, so I am grateful to be a part of this passionate team that strive to make a positive impact in our community.

Contribute to our free local support and education programmes – make a difference in our community and donate today.

Meet our Trustees

Lara Burkhardt (Chairperson)

Lara has been a board member since 2012. A lawyer,  she specialises in resource management and Māori Interests. Lara is Whangarei born and of Ngati Whatua descent.  She completed her high schooling in Tauranga which is now her home.

Dave Lathan (Treasurer)

Dave is the founder of local firm of Chartered Accountants, Lathan & Associates. He is an Chartered Accountant that graduated with honours in 2002. 

Dave has been passionate about raising money for Breast Cancer since 2014, after his Dad was diagnosed with Breast Cancer in UK. He organises an annual breakfast and charity auction.

Dave has been a Trustee and the Treasurer of BCSSTT since March 2021.

Ashley Macpherson

Ashley is a lawyer who came to New Zealand in 2015 from Northern Ireland. She is a breast cancer survivor who considers BCSS to be an essential support service which played a huge part in her recovery. Ashley wants to help ensure those services continue for all those in need long into the future. Ashley joined the Board in 2022.

Nicola Davis

Nicola is an Oncoplastic Breast and General Surgeon at Tauranga and Grace Hospitals.  She moved to the Bay of Plenty in 2019 with her husband.  She is passionate about delivering patient centred care to people with breast cancer and is delighted to be part of an organisation that provides amazing support to those diagnosed with breast cancer.  Nicola joined the Board in 2022.

Cathy Stephenson

Cathy is now retired, kept busy by golf, grandchildren, and running quiz events.  Diagnosed with breast cancer in 2021, within weeks of her retirement, Cathy felt privileged to receive high levels of care and support through the hospital system and through information and other practical support offered by BCSST.  Cathy brings a wealth of commercial experience to our Board, with a focus on good processes and pragmatic decision-making.  She is our newest member, having joined our Board in 2023.

Claire Keen

Claire is Manager of Althorp Village. Diagnosed with breast cancer in 2015, Claire  was overwhelmed by the tremendous care and support she received from BCSS, family and friends.  She has been  a support buddy and board member since early 2019. Claire is passionate about using her business acumen and her networking abilities to pay it forward for those in our community with breast cancer.

Christine Wenzlick

Christine joined the board in early 2019 and also volunteers her time with fundraising events. As someone who had breast cancer treatment prior to moving to Tauranga she is keen to be part of an organisation that offers such fantastic support for those going through breast cancer.


This product has been added to your cart