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Our ambassadors

We’re lucky to have the support of an amazing group of individuals.

Introducing Maude Morris, musician

Hawke's Bay musician Maude Morris joined What's Up as an ambassador after writing and composing the services new theme song, "We'll be around." The connection was made that Maude’s parents wrote, produced and sang the original 0800 What’s Up music jingle back in the 1990s. It was recorded in her dad’s studio (downstairs in their family home). She remembers the song being played over and over when it was being mixed and mastered and her Mum singing it round the house because it was stuck in her head.

Maude said that inspirations for her song came from the lyrics in the chorus of the original song, “I thought they were great and had good meaning and didn’t need to be changed that much, the “what’s up is listening” part was a huge part in the last song and a very important part.”

Maude feels that she has a big connection to the song, “I think it’s awesome that we can keep it in the family.”

The talented young musician is very excited to be on board and has lots of great advice for aspiring musicians. Having lost her father at a young age, she knows how valuable good support is.

 


Introducing Luuka Jones, Olympic kayaker

Olympic kayaker Luuka Jones is doing what she can to encourage struggling young people to get the help they need. The Tauranga-raised athlete is the new ambassador for 0800 What's Up. "I'm really excited to be a part of What's Up and be an ambassador because I think it's a really great thing to support," she said.

The 25-year-old was approached by a friend who is involved in the organisation. " I never had anything like this growing up."It would have been nice to know so I could pass it on to my friends." Jones knows the value of having someone to talk to when times are tough."From my experience, if you're having a hard time you do sometimes feel like keeping it inside but it just gets worse."Sometimes it just helps to talk to somebody about what's going on in your life," she said."There are a lot of kids out there who are having a hard time growing up that just need people to talk to."

The five-time national canoe slalom champion hoped she could encourage young people to work through life's tough patches to achieve their dreams.


Introducing Chris Tempest, who stars in Shortland Street as Dr Josh Gallagher

"I got involved with 0800 What’s Up because I was living with an 0800 What’s Up counsellor, and she came to me and asked if I’d be interested in being an ambassador.  When she told me about the service and how it helps kids in New Zealand, I said ‘yeah, definitely’! All children should know about 0800 What’s Up, and that there’s someone for them to talk to, because everyone goes through a rough time at some point.

When I was a kid I was bullied and made fun of because I had quite sticky-out ears. At high school it got pretty bad and I got a lot of flak. I felt terrible and I wanted to change them, so I had an operation when I was 13. I was really lucky to have someone to talk to through those times – my mum, who is very supportive, and is a nurse too so had a lot of knowledge and made me feel at ease. But lots of kids don’t have anyone to talk to, and if I hadn’t, I know it would have been a downward spiral for me."


Introducing Terenzo Bozzone, professional triathlete

I became an ambassador for 0800 What’s Up when I was still in high school along with my friend and fellow athlete Cam Colkoen. We were both really into sports and I had a vision of becoming a great sportsman – not just for personal reasons, but because I thought it would be a platform from which to make a real difference in the community.

It's a great cause. I’ve been very lucky in my life, but I’ve had friends who really could have used a service like 0800 What’s Up but didn’t get that help, and some terrible things happened as a result.  I always mention 0800 What’s Up when I’m talking to young people at risk. At my sporting events there are always lots of young people around, and most of my friends have school age children, so I’m often in contact with kids and spread the word about what a great service it is.