HIPPY facilitates Intergenerational change

Great Potentials Foundation is a charitable trust for the promotion of education and parental support.

We are in communities that need help to unleash the potential of their children, young people and parents.

At Great Potentials we are working for and with children, young people and families to promote family function, relieve suffering, release potential, reduce disparities in New Zealand society, reduce crime and violence and break the cycle of disadvantage.

Our purpose is a broad one - Helping children, young people and families towards brighter futures.


We focus on key points of transition
in people's lives:


Early intervention worksThrough our we help parents make the transition to ‘conscious parenting’, helping them develop the empathy and the practical skills necessary for their children to thrive.

Through – our Home Interaction Programme for Parents and Youngsters – we help parents become their child’s first and most important teacher, in preparation for the transition into school and the child’s pathway through education.

Through   – our Mentoring and Tutoring Education Scheme – we help young people make a secure transition into secondary school and to make the transition into tertiary study, training or employment.

Children are well established on an educational journey

Why we do what we do:

Great Potentials Foundation was founded in response to the troubling fact that a large percentage of New Zealand's children and young people are on the path to a relatively dismal future, through a variety of circumstances, encapsulated in the word “disadvantage”.

For almost 30 years we have introduced, developed and managed programmes focused on breaking cycles of disadvantage and unleashing potential for our most at-risk families and youth. We are committed to helping children, young people and families towards brighter futures.

Learning with HIPPY

Behind every number is a life.

We have the privilege of hearing the stories from people whose futures have taken a different track as a result of participating in our programmes - young people, children and parents have seen their lives change.

Mothers who have found the courage and confidence to go back to education or back to work themselves, for the sake of their children and their futures. Women who have found their voices, their strength, in being acknowledged and supported as the first and most important teacher in their children’s lives.

Five year olds starting school for the very first time, bravely taking on the exciting new challenge with self-assurance thanks to their preschool education, reaping the benefits of reading, writing, and extended numeracy and verbal skills that they’ve learned through HIPPYMATES benefits students in many ways

Young students, uncertain about their ability in their final year of Intermediate School, unsure about what’s to come at Secondary School, blossoming in confidence and learning thanks to their MATES Mentors.

Senior students, facing big decisions following the end of their formal school days, are strengthened and buoyed through the support and encouragement of their MATES Mentors.

And families facing a huge range of challenges in their lives, from financial to emotional and practical, have found their haven and their mana at the Family Service Centres, where they have accessed support in many forms.


We are so proud to support these children, young people and families.


The future is brighter for these New Zealanders, thanks to the support from so many, and we look forward to continuing our path from strength to strength.

We have the privilege of hearing the stories from people whose futures have taken a different track as a result of participating in our programmes - young people, children and parents have seen their lives change.





We greatly value the support of those who share our concerns and who enable us, through their contributions of funding and personal efforts, to work towards our vision:

"Well-nurtured children and young people, in well-functioning families, contributing to safe communities
and a prosperous nation...."

You can help us make a difference.

Dame Lesley MaxWe’ve shown how to release the power of low-income parents to enable their children to start school in great shape.
We’ve shown how to release the altruism and energy of university students to help young people achieve.
We’ve shown how a modest neighbourhood family centre can help, heal and motivate.
Now we need to scale up even further to reach more people who need us."
— Dame Lesley Max, Co-Founder and Trustee