Warkworth Staff

Linda and Evan Ward (Director)

Linda is the owner and manager of the Reach Forward Early Learning Centres. Right from the very start she knew she would be involved in teaching – as a young girl she would line her dolls up and proceed to show them all how to read and write. From these humble beginnings she has soared in her career.

For the first 11 years of her work life she taught primary aged school children both here, in New Zealand and overseas. And then before moving on to owning and operating her own businesses she spent a further 11 years working in a church developing their children’s enterprises. Previous experience in opening six children’s facilities led to this stage of her career. But owning and operating Childcare Centres is not all Linda loves to do. She has a passion for training teachers to be effective and gifted professionals. She has published several professional education articles. Her collection of books continues to grow as she buys more and more to assist those under her care.

Travel features high on her goals in life. She has already travelled to over 39 countries – Europe, Africa, America and Asia but she still longs to see more.

Her husband, Evan, spent his teenage years (from 10 to 20) in the middle of the Borneo jungle whilst his parents shared Jesus with the local Dyak people. Evan speaks fluent Indonesian, Dyak and English. Both Evan and Linda support many mission ventures. Having spent many years in the jungle Evan is a practical man – the centres property manager. Spending his young formative years working with people who had very little in the way of material possessions has influenced Evan’s thoughts and actions; he is constantly grateful for the life he has, here in New Zealand. His days are filled with maintenance work, building, carpentry and technology; making him a valuable member of our team.

Both love belonging to a local church. They relax by cooking up a storm and having theme dinner parties with family and friends.

Linda leads by example, works with all her might and has the vision and capacity to grow Reach Forward into a place where children, teachers and families develop and flourish.

Louette van Deventer (Warkworth)

Aunty Louette is originally from South Africa. She and her husband, Dewald, like to spend time with friends and family. They were both raised in Christian homes and have a deep love for God. Louette has a talent for art and craft; especially painting and sewing. Home decorating and house design also bring her joy. She and her husband love the outdoors and are keen to explore New Zealand.

Louette studied for her Bachelor of Education degree in S.A in a small town called Potchefstroom in the North West province. She completed her studies in 2010. She has been a teacher ever since. She loves children and thoroughly relishes the role of being a godmother to a baby boy.

Louette is of the opinion that she is called to be a teacher. She is passionate about children and enjoys each stage of their development.

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