TEDxManukau Speaker Debbie Munroe

Debbie Munroe is a 51 year old Maori woman who has lived in Manurewa for over 30 years.  She is a proud mother of five children and four whangai children and delights in her 12 mokopuna.  A teacher of 20 years in South Auckland schools, Debbie gave up teaching and became a voluntary youth worker.

Throughout her adult life, Debbie has supported over 80 young people, providing them with a room in her own home, attending court and/or family group conferences with them or visiting them in prison.  Debbie does this because she believes she cares deeply about her community.

In 2014, Debbie discovered some comments on Facebook about the youth of Manurewa causing havoc in Southmall Shopping Centre.  Unimpressed by the negative feedback from the community about their youth, Debbie decided to do something about this.  Discovering the harsh reality of poverty in her community, Debbie started up a soup walk through Southmall and Clendon.

Debbie and her team hand out free kai to the young people and the community. They do this because they want to, not because they have to.  They do this to make positive changes to lives of people living in their community.  Debbie’s soup walk proves to her community that there are people out there that care – whether that be by giving out soup, or providing donations.  She is determined to continue to make a difference now and into the future.