McKenzie Centre - Realising a child's potential - Early intervention for children with special needs - Te Whare Awhina o nga Kohungahunga Haua



 McKenzie Centre was established in 1982 with donations from McKenzie Education Foundation and the Telethon Trust. The original building was provided by Ministry of Education. The aims of the Centre are to provide quality early intervention for children with special needs, and support and guidance for their families.


Sir Roy Mckenzie was Patron for McKenzie Centre for many years from 1984 until his death in 2007, after then his wife, Lady Shirley was our Patron until her death in 2012. Lady Shirley wrote a letter to acknowledge our 25th anniversary

"Please convey my congratulations on your anniversary. Roy would have been so delighted that you have achieved so much over these years since you first started.

With all good wishes from the McKenzie family in your future- long may you continue with the good work."  



McKenzie Centre is a Registered Charitable Trust. The Governance role at the Centre is undertaken by the Trust which is made up of volunteers from the community and parents with children currently attending the Centre. The Trust welcomes family/whanau comments and recommendations, so you are involved in decision making regarding our service. Meetings are held monthly and minutes are posted on our notice board in the family/whanau room. The day to day running of the Centre is the responsibility of the Centre Director.




As part of our 25th Anniversary celebrations in September 2009 we decided to rebrand both our logo and tag line.

Previously the logo represented the arms of the families/whanau embracing and supporting the children.

 The new logo was developed by Jane Burton, Artworx. We are grateful for her expertise and the time she willingly gave to this project. Jane has included many symbols and metaphors into the new logo.

Pink gives light to: friendship, love, affection, caring and nurturing

Red displays: strength, power, energy, determination, passion and drive

Green portrays: growth, freshness, nature, safety, healing and hope

Orange shows: enthusiasm, fascination, happiness, creativity, success, encouragement and stimulation.

 The swirl (koru) represents the enveloping of everyone- child, parent, siblings, extended family/whanau all working together to achieve a common goal – to start at the core and wind slowly up the path to success- being supported all the way. The hand represents McKenzie Centre giving children a "helping hand" in life.

The new tag line "Realising a child's potential" was the outcome of some deliberation. The trustees, staff and families wanted a line that was simple and captured that McKenzie Centre is a place for children. There are different ways of interpreting this phrase. For example, some families do not realise their child has potential; particularly if they have been given a poor prognosis or are feeling overwhelmed. The parent's expertise combined with the expertise of the staff help our children develop to their fullest potential and children realise or reach their goals. At McKenzie Centre you have other parents who celebrate your child's achievements with you; sometimes the significance of our children's achievements are not understood by others who have typically developing children. Parents often tell us they come to McKenzie Centre as they feel accepted and comfortable here.