Finding strength together as mothers

Published: May 16, 2019

Huntly mother, Pamela South, shares her life-changing experience alongside a group of mothers involved in a prevention service for rangatahi in youth justice.

Pamela and Myles
Myles and Pamela

Making a better life for our families

My name is Pamela South and I live in Huntly with my youngest son, Myles, who is 15.

Over the past two years, I’ve turned my life around alongside a group of mothers who are working together to make a better life for each other and our families.

We were connected through Oranga Rangatahi, a youth service in Huntly which our boys are involved in. It’s a collaboration between Oranga Tamariki, Huntly College, Police, the Ministry of Education and Waikato DHB, to guide our young people away from offending.

They are learning ways to control their energy and behaviour and focus on achieving their goals. We wanted to show our boys that although we struggle at times as mothers, we will do everything we can to support them on this journey.

The mothers support group in Huntly
The mothers support group in Huntly

My message to other mothers who are struggling is don’t give up and keep striving for what you know your family can become.

Pamela South
Pamela South at the Australasian Youth Justice Conference in Sydney
Pamela shared her story at the Australasian Youth Justice Conference

Believing in myself and my whānau

I shared my experience at the Australasian Youth Justice Conference in Sydney earlier this month with support from Oranga Tamariki and the response was incredible.

I’d like to thank the team at Oranga Rangatahi for bringing us mothers together and putting your hearts and souls into motivating and inspiring our young men and women. I can't underline enough how much of a difference this has made for us.

Two years ago, I was a shell of my current self, but I now have the strength to push harder than I have ever pushed in my life to make my family wealthier in love, happiness and hope.

Myles is doing so well at school now and he has the skills he needs to break down barriers and achieve his goal of becoming a Police officer. I admire his determination to overcome the setbacks and struggles he’s had and I’m so proud of how far he has come.