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Equally Well backbone team

The Equally Well backbone team provides overall direction, facilitates communication and action, including through Loomio and the e-news, works with champions to encourage and support activities, and shares stories of good practice from around the country. Backbone support is one of the most important factors for successful collaboration.

Meet the backbone team

Everyone in the backbone team has other roles and responsibilities within Te Pou, but each person brings important perspectives and skills to Equally Well.

  • Helen Lockett, Wise Group strategic policy advisor. Helen is the strategic lead for Equally Well, building the profile with stakeholders, and finding opportunities to expand and strengthen activities in the sector
  • Ashley Koning, Te Pou addiction programme lead. Ashley provides insight and guidance from an addiction perspective
  • Caro Swanson, Te Pou mental health principal advisor and service user lead. Caro provides a service user perspective and advises on strategic issues and direction
  • Wendy Donaldson, Te Pou researcher. Wendy coordinates the Equally Well Loomio group and distributes the quarterly e-news
  • Rachel Kapeli, Te Pou project co-ordinator. Rachel provides project management support to the team
  • Paulien Fa’atafa, Platform Trust.
  • Jo Witko, Deaf Mental Health and Addictions Programme Manager, Platform Trust

The role of Te Pou

Te Pou provides ongoing coordination and support through the backbone team, and hosts Equally Well resources and information on this website. Te Pou is also taking action for Equally Well in its own work.

Key Contacts

Related Initiatives



Te Pou has a wide range of evidence-based resources and tools to help the mental health, addiction and disability workforces.

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Our work

Te Pou works alongside mental health and addiction services, and disability organisations to understand their priorities and workforce challenges.

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