The People of Tauranga Startup Weekend 2019 

Meet Karleigh one of our Startup Weekend participants this year. We met her at our pre-TGASW19 event at Groundswell Festival’s Lunch & Learn at Our Place Tauranga. She was so enthusiastic and listened to Pascale’s lowdown presentation on the Lean Canvas with great amazement.


“I can do this, if you explain it like this. I actually understand how I can make a difference now”


Karleigh decided then and there that she wanted to join us for Tauranga Startup Weekend Sustainable Development Goals. Less than two weeks later the pitches started at Basestation. Wearing autism with pride and educating others along the way this woman truly inspired lots of people this weekend by her personal involvement.

Karleigh was so brave standing up in front of everyone pitching her story about how she wanted to change the system and include people with disabilities. Changing the world towards a sustainable future one step at a time. Developing a platform to bring people with disabilities together and provide resources.

Here at Tauranga Startup Weekend, we like to be an inclusive bunch. That is why we had a chat with Karleigh about things she needed to make her Startup Weekend experience with us the best one ever.
We created our first ever quiet space for participants to take a break from their teams and disruptions at the venue, provided special food requests executed by Mario hustling up some yummie vegan sushi and preparing finger food for her to enjoy.

Making sure there was always a crewmember, facilitator or mentor there to help. That is what the true Startup Weekend community experience is all about.

What can we learn from Karleigh? Well, nothing should stop you from achieving your goals. Ask those questions, join the community and make sure your ideas are heard. Karleigh had an amazing team experience working with different people on projects she never came across before.

"Tauranga Startup Weekend taught me so many things, now I know what I need to do and what I do and do not want for my ideas" 

If you want to participate in a future event and have any questions about how we can help you take that next step. Make sure you get in touch!  

Are you curious about joining our community? Or do you want to have a chat about opportunities we can provide in the Startup Community, regardless of what disability you might have, contact us!

https://www.facebook.com/TaurangaStartUpWeekend/ 

https://www.instagram.com/tgasw/

https://twitter.com/tgasw

http://communities.techstars.com/new-zealand/tauranga

#tauranga #startupweekend #event #teamwork #TGASW #SDG #thankyou #Startup

#TGASW19 #TaurangaStartupWeekend #Diversity #Inclusiveness #Impact #Passion #Sustainability

Photos by: James Oliver  &  Salina Galvan Photography

A big thank you goes out to all of the hard work of our volunteers over the weekend as mentors, judges, and our 2019 organising team. This weekend would not be able to be a success without our sponsors for supporting the Startup Weekend community, helping local volunteers, help local entrepreneurs get started!

Tauranga City Council Candidates


Erika Harvey, Heidi Hughes, Suzi Paige, and A.J. Tuhoro, are all out to turn around Tauranga city in the upcoming council election. Tackling Tauranga’s tensions needs to be done by the roots, addressing the underlying problems which Tauranga is experiencing in order to generate a positive and community within Tauranga, stimulating community and individual wellbeing.

Erika Harvey, with the support of creativity, collaboration, business acuity and heart, Tauranga city council is able to be redesigned, to start addressing Tauranga city's problems and strategising a solution of transparency that drives accountability and ensures Tauranga is spending money where it matters most.

Heidi Hughes, a practical problem solver with a background in Sustainable Practice is focusing on Tauranga’s growing issue of congestion, with the aim to develop a multi-modal transport network that supports Tauranga’s population health and well-being, while ensuring future generations thrive.

Suzi Paige, with a desire to facilitate community connections within Tauranga to stimulate a vibrant, thriving and diverse city, throughout communities and individuals across Tauranga. With the large subject of climate change, strong, visionary leaders are what Tauranga is in need of to nurture the future of the city, environment and population.

A.J. Tuhoro, with a centralisation of whanau and connectedness, aims to facilitate the building of Tauranga to be a collective family unit with a greater sense of community. By focusing on improving Tauranga city for future generations, and our current generation finding joy in the journey, Tauranga is able to be developed to be the number one destination to raise a family.

Collectively, the Tauranga City Council candidates have come together to attend Startup Weekend 2019, to build a stronger, more resilient community, to begin pathing the way to a brighter future for Tauranga.

#TGASW Team: CoCo
Bringing transparency to council projects

Tauranga’s 2019 Startup Weekend is taking on the seventeen sustainable development goals, address global problems and challenges surrounding sustainability. Pitching local solutions developing ideas into concepts, and work on solutions for the good of our people and planet..all over the course of a single weekend!


This weekend would not be able to be a success without the support of our sponsors:

Photos by: James Oliver  &  Salina Galvan Photography

Tauranga’s 2019 Startup Weekend is taking on the seventeen sustainable development goals, address global problems and challenges surrounding sustainability – the first in New Zealand to have a Startup Weekend dedicated to the 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDG).

Supported by future-focussed sponsors, and organised by an entire team of volunteers hailing from across our local community, Startup Weekend is able to bring together cohorts of people from all over the country, with a vast array of backgrounds, building a community right here in Tauranga.
This year’s cohort is filled with amazing people who have been tackling many of the seventeen sustainable development goals prior to this weekend. From mental health, to environmental conservation, this year’s participants do not align with the values of the SDGs, but are taking action by taking action.

The Barter Barber, Sam 


Sam, known as the Barter Barber is on a mission to get men talking about their mental health. Having lost four males in his life to suicide, three from Tauranga and countless clients in just three years, Sam is has teamed up with Lifeline, touring the country to increase awareness and encourage men in New Zealand to talk about their mental health and wellbeing while in the chair of the barber.
Having trained at Clifford Lamar in Tauranga, Sam has started his own barbershop, travelled teaching business people how to start a barber shops overseas and all over New Zealand.

His poodle-cross, Bo, who is soon-to-be a registered service dog travels with Dowdall, and have been living out of a 1971 Bedford ambulance since February, towing a barbershop caravan behind. As an amateur film-maker, Dowell is filming the two-year journey, hoping to produce a documentary, which he will dedicate to the last friend he lost to suicide, in December. On his travels, Dowell taking a leap of faith is trading barbering haircuts for services, rather than money. Challenging the status-quo, this passion for sustainability and wellbeing has brought Sam to the Tauranga Startup Weekend 2019 Sustainable Development Edition to form a team, and kick-start innovation and sustainability among the hair/ salon industry.

#TGASW Team: Hair to Stay
Making horticulture healthier and sustainable

Bay Conservation Alliance

With an overall vision to support “a healthy environment enriching nature and people,” Michelle Elborn from Bay Conservation Alliance has a strong relationship with the Sustainable Development Goals, and the actionables needed to integrate these into communities, cities and environments. 

Originally from the UK having completed her master’s degree in Conservation and Recreation Management, Michelle moved to New Zealand in 2001. Working across sustainability, community development, strategy and communications with the Tauranga City Council, she now leads the
Bay Conservation Alliance, which presents a huge opportunity to develop a new model for community centralised conservation through the development and implementation of strategy to stimulate change. 

With a long-standing passion for the environment, Michelle attended Tauranga’s Startup Weekend in order to develop tourism for good, in aim to stimulate foot traffic across less known iSites across Tauranga.

#TGASW Team: The Hikoi Squad

Developing tourism for good

Tauranga’s 2019 Startup Weekend is taking on the seventeen sustainable development goals, address global problems and challenges surrounding sustainability. Pitching local solutions developing ideas into concepts, and work on solutions for the good of our people and planet..all over the course of a single weekend!

Photos by: Salina Galvan Photography  &  James Oliver 

What happened during Startup Weekend 2019?

This year's teams developed businesses around community development, education, innovation, environmental conservation, sustainable fashion, financial investment, tourism and business development, that all aligned with an array of 17 SDG's. With a multitude of different backgrounds, skills and experiences, of both participants and volunteers, teams did incredibly well to tackle such large scope issues, and generate a business model that is orientated around the SDGs, expanding potentials of one and other, and what can be worked on further to really make a difference in Aotearoa, and the world. 

This year's event also carries a few milestones, with the TGASW being the first Startup Weekend to focus specifically on the SDG's in New Zealand, second in the world. This is such a milestone as Tauranga working toward sustainability across the 17 platforms. Ta is not just the first to focus in on the SDGs, but is also the first female facilitated event in New Zealand! Lead and facilitated by two incredibly strong and intelligent women, Sacha MacDonald and Renee Raroa, who powered through and carried the teams through all stages of the sprint that is Startup Weekend.

The fuel for participants throughout the weekend is good food. Continuing to align and work toward the SDG's, this weekend's meals were completely plant-based – and it was delicious! Provided by Fish Face, who specifically catered this event to be completely Vegan, customised their menu for this event especially! As delicious as the food was, we did have leftovers, and meeting SDG #2 - No Hunger, any uneaten food was donated to Under the Stars, who provide food to homeless in Tauranga, which fed another 60 people over the weekend.

I have had an incredible time over the 52 jam-packed hours of this weekend – it is extremely humbling being surrounded by such great and motivated individuals, so thank you for bringing me in to be a part of the Tauranga community, I'll be sure to see you all soon!


A BIG thank you goes out to all of the hard work of our volunteers over the weekend as mentors, judges, and especially our 2019 organising team. This weekend would not be able to be a success without the support, dedication, and involvement of all those within the Startup Weekend and Tauranga community including our sponsors for supporting this event to help local volunteers, help local entrepreneurs get started!

The Mentors: 

The Crew: 

We're always looking for great companies to get involved and help support the community, so get in touch about our next event!
If you want to be a part of the madness and attend another Startup Weekend in Tauranga click the link below and follow us for details!
https://www.facebook.com/TaurangaStartUpWeekend/
https://www.instagram.com/tgasw/
https://twitter.com/tgasw
http://communities.techstars.com/new-zealand/tauranga
#tauranga #startupweekend #event #teamwork #TGASW #SDG #thankyou

And That is a Wrap!

The participants of Tauranga Startup Weekend 2019 have been grinding, taking on the seventeen sustainable development goals, address global problems and challenges surrounding sustainability. From problem discovery, validation and ideation, teams pitched, local solutions developing ideas into concepts, and work on solutions for the good of our people and planet..all over the course of 54 hours!

Final pitches are 5 minutes long, where teams have to synthesise their problem discovery and designed solution, explain their business model and how their business aligns with the Sustainable Development Goals. The team’s pitches are then evaluated by a panel of judges against the criteria of Validation, Business Model, Execution and Design, and the SDG change they are making.
This year’s judges we warmly welcome are Strategist, Rachel Glasier, Stacey Mareroa from Te Huono Horticulture, and Marcus Wilkins from Mackenzie Elvin Law.

So who pitched?

CoCo: Bringing transparency to council projects
ESM: Changing the perception of Esports through workshops and innovation
Good Farm: Educational platform for dairy farmers
Hair For Good: Making horticulture healthier and sustainable.
Harvest Border: Harvesting rainwater system to alleviate council supply and contribute to the water crisis
SwapSwipe: Developing a solution for sustainable practices in the fashion industry
Suffi¢ent: International micro-investment platform
The Hikoi Squad: Developing tourism for good
Toitū: Helping local businesses with sales and marketing in a sustainable way

And for the results!

With an honourable mention, E-Sport Manaaki Association (ESM) is out to change the perceptions of E-Sports in communities across New Zealand. Through workshops, they are educating educators and families on the well-being which E-Sports provide athletes, and the future career paths available to young New Zealanders.

In third place was The Hikoi Squad! Developing tourism for good, through the integration of the renowned Gruffalo character using augmented reality to stimulate foot traffic across less known iSites across Tauranga.

In second place came CoCo! Bringing transparency to council projects, connecting members of the Tauranga community with the city council through a digital platform we locals can track, monitor and engage with council projects.

And the winner of the 2019 Tauranga Startup Weekend Sustainable Development Edition was awarded to Hair For Good! Hair for good is looking to contribute to the circular economy by utilising the waste created by hairdressers and barbers and managing the hair wastage, by introducing it as a growing medium in the horticulture industry.


A big thank you goes out to all of the hard work of our volunteers over the weekend as mentors, judges, and our 2019 organising team. This weekend would not be able to be a success without our sponsors for supporting the Startup Weekend community, helping local volunteers, help local entrepreneurs get started!

Save the date! 23rd September is going to be our reunion! Located at Basestation, our TGASW reunion will kick off at 5:30pm and we would love to see you there! This is where participants, mentors, and crew can re-gather without the stress, and see where everyone has got to since the weekend. This event is open to the public and we'd love to have anyone who is a part of the community or wants to come along! More details will be up over the next few weeks, so keep an eye out on our social media platforms!

We're always looking for great companies to get involved and help support the community, so get in touch about our next event!
If you want to be a part of the madness and attend another Startup Weekend in Tauranga click the link below and follow us for details!
https://www.facebook.com/TaurangaStartUpWeekend/
https://www.instagram.com/tgasw/
https://twitter.com/tgasw
http://communities.techstars.com/new-zealand/tauranga
#tauranga #startupweekend #event #teamwork #TGASW #SDG #thankyou

Before this weekend, never in my life had I participated in a Startup Weekend. I’d seen the Tauranga one being promoted for a number of years now and every time I saw it I was interested but for every reason under the sun, I’d never shown up to one.

Until this year.

You know that feeling of nervous excitement you get before starting something new, walking into a room by yourself full of strangers and just praying that someone adopts you as their friend? Well, walking into TGASW very quickly became like walking into a room of my kind of people. Curious, risk-taking, intelligent and open.

I was blown away by the incredible diversity of the group, all ages, stages, ethnicities, genders and a huge range of skills made for an epic atmosphere for creating change.

The United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) were used to focus the groups for our work over the weekend.

For those of you that are curious about SW, here’s how it all goes: 
- Meet epic people
- Pitch your idea in 60s (if you have one)
- Vote on your favourite pitches
- Form teams around the top pitches
- Spend the next 50 odd hours creating a viable business solution to an SDG aligned problem
- Eat delicious food
- Imbibe way too much caffeine (optional)
- Pitch your epic idea to a panel of judges
- Celebrate survival, entrepreneurship and creativity

Not having pitched an idea myself, I wandered the ideas and two resonated. One starting out as a hair product to support worm farming and another around more sustainable dairy production. Haunted by group projects from university, I ended up going with the dairy group as it was slightly smaller and I knew we’d be able to move faster when it came to making decisions. Our team was made up of Josephine, Jackson, Isabelle, Natashia and myself. The perfect combo of ages, experience and curiosity.

I’m not the kind of person who loves going in circles for long periods of time. Speaking of which it took me only until around 10am Saturday to have my first HOLY COW moment. My head literally spinning after hours of talking the night before and then coming in fresh but still not getting any closer to the problem we were trying to solve. For my ‘lets move forward’ brain, it was a tough moment. Deep breaths and a walk away from the table were needed. I have been assured that this is a totally normal component of SW.

Insert help from the Mentors. The great thing about SW is that it's supported by an incredible group of mentors who voluntarily give up their time to help the teams validate and move their ideas forward. We got help from Jo, who sat with us until we pulled the next steps out of our heads and put them into action points. The mentors roam the place helping us by asking questions and pushing us to find that solution. And sometimes you actually just want them to go away (I mean this with love of course) because you can be happily going along the track and then BAM spanner in the works, brought to you by a mentor. Sometimes that means back to the drawing board or a big reshuffle which can cause a lot of pain for a group who thought they were onto something.

We eventually reached the pointy end of our problem was that with all the bad press about the dairy industry in New Zealand, those farmers that are actually doing a good job of looking after their land aren’t being recognised for their efforts.

Throwing ideas around like starting our own dairy brand, building our own full dairy factory and more, eventually, we settled on a podcast series which highlighted and heroed those doing farming well.

But this is not the place for you to hear our pitch. This story is about an experience.

This was the first time I’ve used a Lean Canvas process for starting a business. In this high-pressure group situation you need these guidelines to avoid debating solutions and customers for hours on end. Follow the process and gradually you’ll get results.

Classic Startup Weekend points included:
- Practice pitch one going a bit like a train wreck and considering throwing the whole idea away at 9pm Saturday night
- Long hours. Our team was the last to leave on Saturday due to said bad pitch
- High points of enthusiasm from all team members and totally enjoying the ride
- Low points of doubt where we sat in complete silence
- Success by the time the 3rd practice pitch came around
- Panic to create the slides in time
- Nerves pre-pitch
- Post-event feels for everything that everyone created collaboratively

Monday morning I woke with a feeling of existential crisis. Having been in the midst of people wanting to change the world, Monday reality hit hard. Having been assured that this too was also normal, I decided that to keep making a difference in the world I needed only to improve what I do every day. Just 1% at a time.

So I sit here with tea in hand, reflecting on what can be created in 54 hours. That we, as humans, have so much potential and have the ability to change so much in our lifetimes.

And that the best thing we can do is to start.

Guest Blog by: Chloe Wickman

Instagram: @chloewickmanbizcoach

Linkedin:    Chloe Wickman

A group of Bay of Plenty college students have earned national recognition by developing and selling thousands of dollars worth of educational cards. They say the experience of building a business has been priceless - and a big opportunity could be in their future.

Put 55 entrepreneurs, developers, and designers together in one room and they'll establish a Startup Enterprise in 54 hours (with mentors, tools, food and stationery provided of course)! 

Here is the list of mentors, their superpowers, conveniently organised in their 'SuperPower Team' so that you know who to call on for what. 

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