Who are we ?

OHRN Committee 2022/2023

Quentin McDonald
Quentin McDonald
Chair
Quentin's has recently retired after a 30-year career as a computational chemist with Schrödinger Inc. working in computational modelling, machine learning and data visualisation. He has been involved in local predator control efforts and runs a couple of community trap lines on private and public land.
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Annabelle Hasselman
Deputy Chair
Annabelle has a background in geography, landscape architecture and water management. She is Chair of the Christchurch West Melton Zone Committee.
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Malcolm Long
Secretary, Communications, Operations
Malcolm has a background in science and mathematics teaching as well as educational administration. He is associated with the Friends of Farnley Reserve and the Laura Kent Workgroup.
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Kay Robertson
Treasurer
Kay brings a financial background in tax and investments to her role in OHRN. She also takes a leading role in Predator Free Ōpāwaho.
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Genevieve Long
Community Group Liaison
Genevieve has a background in music education and a passion for growing things. She has lived by the river all her life and patrols its banks daily.
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Rachel Barker
Committee
Rachel’s background is in conservation having worked on community partnerships for the Department of Conservation. She leads a group at the Ferrymead Heathcote Saltmarsh on the lower river.
Jenny Bond
Jenny Bond
Committee
Jenny has worked in regional council, civil construction, community group and central government. She is passionate about finding the best ways to share scientific knowledge so that everyone can understand it and then go on to make positive behaviour choices for our awa and moana.
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Sally Coates
Committee
Sally has a background in river engineering, flood protection, and water management. She is enthusiastic about improving urban water quality and managing suburban land development in a way that is beneficial to local waterways.
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Suzanne Furkert
Committee
Suzanne is a scientist who has worked mainly in product development and renewable energy. She has a passion for science communication and improving the health and appreciation of our rivers and water resources.
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Miria Goodwin
Committee
Miria is a local resident with a passion for rivers and community connection. She has worked for Environment Canterbury as a water policy analyst, writer and facilitator for the last ten years.
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Alisdair Hutchison
Committee
A foundation member, Alisdair brings to the Network a lengthy involvement with the Avon-Heathcote Estuary. He has experience working in Government on environmental issues and in the community establishing and running environmental NGO’s. Alisdair is a Honorary Life Member of the Avon Heathcote Estuary Ihutai Trust.
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Finn Jackson
Committee
Finn is a south Christchurch local with a background in environmental law, politics and climate change strategy/policy. He coordinates the Friends of Riverlaw Esplanade Reserve.
Tim Lindley
Tim Lindley
Committee
Tim is now in his second term on the Linwood/Central/Heathcote Community Board folllowing a career in science, business development, and project management for the health and food industry sectors. He is also on the boards of the Coastal Pathway Group and the Ihutai Estuary Trust
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Colin Meurk
Committee
Colin is an ecological scientist at Manaaki Whenua - Landcare Research. He has over 40 years of experience in grass roots environmental action, research and the teaching of urban ecology and nature conservation.
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Kirsten Taylor
Committee
Kirsten has a background in bioprocess engineering, science, and brewing. She has a passion for sustainability and planetary justice, recently completing a Master of Sustainable Practice. Kirsten is actively involved in monitoring three sites (Citizen Science) on the Ōpāwaho River.
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Chrissie Williams
Committee
After 15 years as a teacher, 10 years as a City Councillor and 8 years helping Christchurch recover from the earthquakes, Chrissie is no longer in full-time employment but is involved as a volunteer with a number of organisations. Chrissie is always trying to reduce our negative impact on our ecosystems.
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Claire Woolf
Committee
Claire has a background in wildlife biology and project management, and coordinates the Somerfield/Lower Cashmere Predator Free Group. Having moved to Christchurch, she is excited to participate in advocating for the health of her new home catchment."

We are always looking for people with a range of skills to continue the growth and development of the Ōpāwaho Heathcote River Network. Come along to one of our committee meetings, held on the 4th Tuesday of the month at the South Library Board Room at 7:00pm or contact the Chair of OHRN

How we work

Our commitment to a healthy group culture includes:

Ground rules

  • Communicating openly, honestly and clearly
  • Being courteous, listening and not interrupting others
  • Being supportive, respectful & peaceful
  • Being responsible for self and reflective of actions

Our Journey

  • Enjoy the journey towards our vision and purpose for the River
  • Celebrate our success
  • Use consensus decision making
  • Work with the energy, enthusiasm and skill of the group
  • Be adaptable and open to opportunities
  • Work collaboratively with others
  • Continue to develop our shared kaupapa with iwi

Our Constitution

The first written constitution was signed in 2017.  However, in July 2021, a new set of rules was drafted and accepted.

July 2021 Constitution of OHRN

Steam Wharf Stream

Research into OHRN effectiveness

As part of the New Zealand Biological Heritage/Ngā Koiora Tuku Iho (BioHeritage) National Science Challenge, researchers from the Cawthron Institute  investigated the effectiveness of OHRN, one of three collectives selected for the study. The intention of the research was to understand the potential of collectives to to connect and amplify community environmental action, and to identify how to set collectives up for success.

Cawthronreportcover

Click image to read the Research Report

Our History

A complete narrative tracing the formation of OHRN from its first faint possibility in 2013 to its incorporation in 2017 is available here.  The milestones along the way are shown below.

2014

Idea for organisation  initiated as response to lack of integrated river management

2015

Community meetings and facilitated workshops lead to Working Group being set up.

First Mother-of-all-Clean-ups on river.

18 June 2016

Formal community vote on establishment of OHRN

First official submission on CCC LTP

22 November 2017

Constitution adopted; Society Incorporated

Co-Chair: Karen Whitla & Helene Mautner

June 2018

Chair: Annabelle Hasselman

Annual submissions to CCC & ECan commence

July 2021

New constitution adopted

Springs project commenced

June 2023

Chair: Quentin McDonald

June 2023

Chair: Quentin McDonald

Cawthron Insitute research into OHRN