• Catherine Butler

    Catherine ButlerCatherine lives in the Hutt Valley and has been involved with supporting
    breastfeeding mums for the last eight years, through her involvement with both the Irish Childbirth Trust and La Leche League (New Zealand and Ireland).

    Trained as a pharmacist, she is the busy mother of three kids, who currently (2019) range in age from three to nine. She is passionate about encouraging parents to find the support and evidence based information that they need, in order to have the breastfeeding journey that is
    best for their family.

  • Fana Temese -To’omaga

    Bio to follow.....Fana Toomaga-Tonuu

  • Heather Cotter

    Heather Cotter

    Heather Cotter is a Breastfeeding Education Specialist and has been training health professionals and community workers in breastfeeding education for over 10 years. Heather was accredited as a La Leche League Leader in 2004, serving a three year term on the LLL National Board and believes passionately in mother-to-mother support. As a National Training Coordinator of the La Leche League Breastfeeding Peer Counsellor Programme, she has travelled throughout New Zealand facilitating this programme. She is committed to protecting, promoting and supporting breastfeeding and has held a number of breastfeeding education and advisory contracts for District Health Boards and Regional Public Health. She was instrumental in setting up and coordinating various breastfeeding networks and is still an active member of these networks.

    Prior to having children, Heather worked in the education sector lecturing in Early Childhood Education at Victoria University. She lives in Lower Hutt and is married with two gorgeous teenagers.


  • Jenni Crowley

    Jenni CrowleyJenni has been a midwife in the Hutt Valley community for ten years, and has been part of the birthEd team for eleven years.  

    She has recently become a mum to a little boy.  This has invigorated her passion for helping parents prepare for the amazing life change that is having a baby.  

    Jenni is passionate about supporting women's choice, healthy physiological birth and breastfeeding, and empowering parents to form loving attachments with their babies. 

  • Jennifer Dutton

    Jennifer DuttonJennifer is a qualified physiotherapist and has been involved in breastfeeding support work, through the Lower Hutt La Leche League group, for 7 years. She is passionate about mother-to-mother breastfeeding support, alongside families having access to up-to-date infomation so that they can make informed decisions regarding their whanau. 

    Jennifer lives in the Hutt Valley and is a mother of three boys.  Her children were born calmly at home and they have helped provide many experiences (and adventures!) in breastfeeding.

  • Jo Sorasio

    Jo SorasioJo is a registered midwife, childbirth educator and mum of 4 beautiful children.

    Jo has been with birthEd since the beginning of 2015 and facilitates a number of classes including; Your Body Your Birth Your Baby, Your Homebirth Option, Keeping Your Baby Safe and Evolve class for Young Mums.  

    Jo acknowledges that every woman's journey through pregnancy, labour, birth and early parenting is different and she aims to provide information that is balanced in an environment that is welcoming and relaxed. 

  • Leith Porter-Samuels

    Leith Porter-SamuelsKo Leith Porter-Samuels tōku ingoa I whānau au ki Whanganui-a-Tara Nga uri o Ngati Haua, Ngati Raukawa o Waitaha au No reira, Tena Koutou, Tena Koutou, Tena Koutou Katoa. Leith is Māori, and she married and raised her whānau in the Hutt Valley.

    Her passion to make the ‘hard stuff’ simpler and empower young Māori mothers is born from her personal experience as a struggling, young, uneducated mother.

    In her early career years she worked with youth and whānau in the community, which eventually lead her to study and graduate as a mature midwife. She is a childbirth educator for birthEd and enjoys interacting with expectant wāhine, partners and whānau.

    Leith has been very involved in developing Kaupapa Māori Antenatal and Kaiāwhina Education (MAKE). She also represents the Hutt Valley District Health Board SUDI Prevention Unit to promote the key messages on Safe Sleeping and Baby Safety in our community.

  • Liora Noy

    Liora NoyLiora is a Registered Nurse (obstetrics) and Lactation Consultant (IBCLC), with a Master in Public Health. She has three children, ages 8-18. She is currently working as a Tamariki Ora (Well Child) nurse, as well as running a breastfeeding support centre in Wellington.

    Originally from Mexico, she has lived in Israel, California and Hawaii. Liora loves teaching the breastfeeding classes, as she feels it’s important to prepare parents for the challenges that breastfeeding often presents. She believes that if parents are well prepared, they will have more patience and perseverance to stick with breastfeeding.

    Liora is also passionate about supporting parents affected by Postnatal Distress having been deeply affected herself by PND. She is a peer counsellor at PND Wellington, and is extremely grateful that Birth Ed
    supports her in teaching a PND class.

  • Maria Hakaraia

    Maria Hakaraia

    Ko Tainui te Waka, ko Tararua nga maunga, Ko Ngati Raukawa te Iwi, ko Maria Hakaraia toku ingoa, No Wainuiomata ahau , tena kotou, tena kotou, tena kotou katoa.

    Maria is a mother and grandmother and was born and bred in Wainuiomata. She works at CCDHB as a Lactation Consultant (Maori and Pacific focus) and is also a qualified Chef.

    She lived and worked in Australia for thirty years, but returned to NZ to live in 2008. She is passionate about how we feed ourselves, especially the first food.


  • Nicky Jackson

    Nicky Jackson

    Nicky has been with birthEd since 2005. She became a registered midwife in 1994, and has worked as an independent midwife, a childbirth educator, and a core staff member in several hospital environments--she currently works as a core midwife at Hutt Valley Health. Nicky is passionate in her commitment to educate pregnant women and their families to improve their experience with and outcomes of the birthing and parenting population. Nicky is married with four children and she has a Masters Degree in Midwifery where she looked at the impact of antenatal breastfeeding education on young women's breastfeeding rates.