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Over the last two years, we have established a Chelmer Christmas tradition: to make a donation in our clients’ name, to an organisation that empowers and supports people to build better lives. Instead of giving traditional gifts to our clients, we select a cause close to our hearts, and where we know dollars will be invested well to make a positive impact.

It has been a challenging year for many people, and we have recognised more than ever, the importance of looking after our wellbeing and the wellbeing of our whānau and community.

Te Rito Toi

We came across Te Rito Toi – an initiative that utilises the arts to make a difference to children’s health and wellbeing through genuinely transformative education.

Managed by the University of Auckland’s Centre for Arts and Social Transformation, Te Rito Toi helps teachers work with children when they first return to school following major traumatic or life changing events. It does that by providing research-informed practical advice, classroom activities and lesson plans to help children better understand their changed world and to begin to see themselves as being part of the promise of new and better futures. The initiative is led by a passionate research team, with lesson plans developed by internationally recognised experts in the arts, including Professor Peter O’Connor.

This year, we have chosen to support Te Rito Toi with a donation, which will help fund Te Rito Toi’s research programmes and the development of online resources.

Professor Peter O’Connor says that helping children to return to school after a crisis plays a vital role in them returning to a full life. Te Rito Toi was downloaded over 300,000 times in the first month of schools’ return during COVID-19. “Our goal is to continuously update the site to make it the international ‘go-to’ for helping teachers facing crisis and trauma with their children” he said.

Making an impact

Alin Ungureanu, Chelmer CEO says this Christmas tradition evolved out of their broader purpose, which is ultimately about improving lives. “Through our technology, Myriad, our aim is to improve lives by making wealth creation simple for our clients and thereby more accessible. Our vision is a world where every individual – no matter their background – has the opportunity to create and accumulate wealth.”

Last year, Chelmer’s Christmas donation to the Moko Foundation’s iMOKO programme provided support to whānau and vulnerable children in need of basic health services. iMOKO’s digital technology proved to be of particular value during the COVID-19 outbreak. They were able to pivot and adapt the iMOKO delivery model rapidly to suit the changing and uncertain environment, which included opening their services for free to the general public. Their technology helped to reduce the risk of spreading infection by providing families with a digital access point for healthcare.

Paying it forward

We encourage our team, clients, family and friends to find a cause close to their hearts this Christmas, and to give what they can – whether it’s time, skills, dollars, or simply spreading the word.

To learn more about Te Rito Toi and the work they are doing to build better futures for children through creativity, visit If you’d like to support the wonderful work they are doing, please contact