Our team

Rev Pauline Stewart

In ministry in New Zealand for over twenty years. Prior to that Pauline and her husband, Stan were consultants in worship, Christian Education and community development for Presbyterian Anglican and Methodist churches in New Zealand, Australia and USA.
Pauline has been Minister and CEO of St Heliers Church and Community Centre for 13 years.

Email: paulines@sthelierscentre.org.nz

Rev Stanley Stewart

Stan has been in ministry for over fifty years. He is half-time employed in our parish.
For years Stan and Pauline have worked to encourage churches to establish and grow as all-age communities.
He is interested in music, drama, festivals and exhibitions.
He is married to Pauline our minister and they have worked together in ministry for thirty three years.

Email: stewart.stan@gmail.com

Graeme Smith

Graeme has a background in Insurance and Finance specialising in HR and administration. Before coming to St Heliers he was the Vice Principal (Administration) at Carey Baptist College for 9 years.
He is married to Ann and has three adult children and nine grandchildren.
He has an MBA and is a Fellow of the Australian & New Zealand Institute of Insurance & Finance where he holds a life membership.

Email: graemes@sthelierscentre.org.nz

Graeme Smith

Graeme has a background in Insurance and Finance specialising in HR and administration. Before coming to St Heliers he was the Vice Principal (Administration) at Carey Baptist College for 9 years.
He is married to Ann and has three adult children and nine grandchildren.
He has an MBA and is a Fellow of the Australian & New Zealand Institute of Insurance & Finance where he holds a life membership.

Email: graemes@sthelierscentre.org.nz

Vivian Wu

Vivian has started to work for the Church and Community Centre since 2005. She started as a PA to Rev Pauline Stewart for 3 years then became an Accounting Admin till now. Vivian is originally from Taiwan and has been living in NZ for over 23 years. She had a degree in International Trading and obtained a diploma in Accounting at AUT.

Email: vivianw@sthelierscentre.org.nz

Lily Manukyan

Lilit is from Armenia.  She moved to New Zealand 3 years ago. Lilit has a background in Teaching and Management specialising in Languages and Business Administration.
Before coming to St Heliers she was a Lecturer at The University of Psychology and Legal Expertise for 5 years.
She is married and has 2 children.
She has 2 Master’s Degrees in Management and Education and a Postgraduate in Business Administration.
Member of the Human Rights Ombudsman’s Office, Armenia

Email: lilitm@sthelierscentre.org.nz

Mary Nissen

Mary has been involved in the health care industry working in sales and marketing and more recently as a part time practitioner working from her home based office.
Mary has 2 university degrees in science and health care areas and works part time at the community centre involved in booking and event management.
Mary is married to Jon. They have a very spoilt dog called Lucy.
She also is a mature artist.

Email: centre@sthelierscentre.org.nz

Deanna Cao

Deanna has started to work for the Church and Community Centre since 2014. She was a high school teacher for more than 15 years. She started as a volunteer of Kid’s program 3 years ago, and is a mandarin teacher since 2015. Deanna is originally from China and has been living in NZ for over 4 years. She is married and has a daughter. She loves kids and likes to share her life with kids.

Email: caoyidie@gmail.com

flFlavio Villani

Flavio Villani completed a Bachelor of Piano Performance with Matteo Napoli at the Conservatory “G.Martucci” in Salerno in 2007. In 2012 he completed a Master in Piano Performance at the University of Auckland with first class honours under the guidance of pianist Stephen De Pledge.

Email: flaviovillaninz@gmail.com

Jacqueline Quick

Jacqui is from the UK she had a background in Grant Making. In 2006 she moved to New Zealand where she has worked in dispute resolution.
Before coming to St Heliers she spent 10 years as a Mediator at the Ministry of Business Innovation and Employment.

Jacqui has a son, Isaac who is at primary school.
She has a BA (Hons) in Social Studies and had completed LEADR Mediator Training with the Resolution Institute

Email: jacquelineq@sthelierscentre.org.nz

Vee Samuel

Born in Wales , of Hungarian /English Heritage,Vee came to New Zealand with her Samoan/ English Husband, Martin in 1991. Having travelled extensively ,she worked in the backpacker industry before her first child,Jake was born. When he started at Small Miracles in 1998, the future connection with the centre was born with all 8 cousins attending over the next 10 years. When her daughter ,Tyla was nearing the end of her time there, Vee started working at the “Fun for Fours Programme”. After a few years, she moved into the After School Care department before taking on the Management of Glendowie Community Centre, Co ordinator of Oscars and now Holiday Programmes.

Email: vees@sthelierscentre.org.nz

Julie De Jong

Julie has a background in Secretarial/Administration/Graphic Design in the Insurance and Publishing industries.
Before coming to St Heliers Centre she was doing Market Research for Informed Sources while raising 2 children for 4 years also prior to this was a Project Administrator at the NZ Herald and PA at AA Insurance for 4 years.
Julie is currently working on a Diploma of Business Studies in Accounting and Management.

Email: julied@sthelierscentre.org.nz

Ingrid de Villiers


Ingrid is the Team Leader at Small Miracles. She has been living in New Zealand since 1998. She is married to Toerien and has a daughter, Charlotte.
She graduated with a BA Ed in South Africa where she taught Geography, History and English at Secondary School level.
In New Zealand she taught English at an English Language School. She also worked as an unqualified pre-school teacher. She decided that this was the career path she wanted to pursue and did a Degree in Early Childhood Education at the University of Auckland. She has Full Registration.

She has been teaching at Small Miracles since 2005. She is passionate about Early Childhood Education and her role at Small Miracles.

“I believe in providing a nurturing environment where each child is encouraged to develop to their fullest potential so that they will thrive and become confident, competent learners and know that they are valued.”

Email: smallmiracles@sthelierscentre.org.nz

Claire Smith


Claire has been working at Small Miracles since January 2016. She has been working as an Early Childhood Teacher for the last 11 years. She has two children, Eva and Freddy who attend St Heliers School.
She graduated from Christchurch College of Education with a Bachelor of Teaching and Learning, and has a passion for working with young children. She has Full Registration.

“I believe in the importance of providing an environment for our tamarikiwhere they feel safe and secure to be able to explore and develop to their fullest potential. A place where we can build strong relationships with ourtamariki and their parents, in which they know they are valued as individuals.”


Email: smallmiracles@sthelierscentre.org.nz

Dee Shuter


Dee has been working at Small Miracles since 2012 and has been working in the early childhood sector for over 20 years. She is married to Adam and has two children, Helena who is studying at university and Fletcher who attends Glendowie College.

She has a Bachelor of Teaching (ECE) and believes that the early years are extremely fundamental to the development of our tamariki and feels that it is both such a pleasure and a privilege to be part of their early learning journey. She has Full Registration.

“My own personal and professional philosophy outlines the importance of providing opportunities for our tamariki to be explorers, encouraging independence and extending their curiosity of the world around them but also to provide a curriculum that is able to balance the serious nature of teaching with joy and humour. I also acknowledge the importance of fostering responsive and reciprocal relationships with both the tamariki and our wonderful whanau”

Email: smallmiracles@sthelierscentre.org.nz

Julie Gianni

Julie is an Early Childhood Educator with many years of experience as both a Teacher and Head Teacher. She has an Early Childhood Diploma and has Full Registration. She has two married children and has recently become a Grandmother.

I love and have a passion for teaching pre-schoolers. I will, with our team, provide a stimulating and fun environment. I value each child’s strengths, interests and abilities and will extend their learning”

Email: smallmiracles@sthelierscentre.org.nz

Megan Stewart


Megan has been working at Small Miracles since September 2016 and has been working in Early Childhood services for 7 years. She has two teenage children, Tom and Grace.
She has a Bachelor of Science degree majoring in Biochemistry and Microbiology, and in 2013 completed a Graduate Certificate in Science and Technology majoring in Human Nutrition. Since her children started school, she has worked as a Teacher Aid at St Luke’s Kindergarten and is now working as a Teacher at Small Miracles Preschool.

“I love children’s sense of fun and curiosity, and I believe harnessing those attributes at a young age helps to grow great learners. I have a special interest in science and I enjoy doing science experiments with children to help encourage that sense of wonder in their environment and the world around them.”

Email: smallmiracles@sthelierscentre.org.nz

Martha Isabel Vasquez Machado

Martha began working at Small Miracles in June 2016 helping a student who has special needs. She then progressed into a role as an unqualified teacher in October 2016. Since 2015 Martha has also been working in the Oscar program before and after school as well as the School Holiday Program for the St Heliers Community Centre.

She is from Colombia and has been living in NZ for 3 years. She has a Bachelor’s degree in Business Administration and before coming to New Zealand she worked in the banking sector for 4 years. Martha believes she has found her true passion in life and absolutely loves working with preschool children.

“I am extremely passionate about children’s learning and development. My job is to help children reach their full potential and encourage them to feel confident and positive about themselves. This always brings a huge smile to my face”

Email: smallmiracles@sthelierscentre.org.nz