Meet Maria

Certified Coach, Wairua Practitioner & Educator

About The Koru Effect

In Aoteroa New Zealand the koru fern frond can be seen everywhere. Whether seen in traditional carvings, artwork, business branding, throughout native bush or nature,  the koru is forever unraveling its spiral, symbolising new beginnings, growth and regeneration.


In a vision of the future Maria saw herself walking amongst many koru growing and regenerating. For her this was metaphorical of The Koru Effect: 


"To work alongside others and effect positive growth in peaceful ways. Bringing new beginnings and influencing future well-being with and for others."


A little about Maria

Work background


Maria has spent the last 25+ years in the leadership and adult learning space for both corporate and public service environments; as well private practice. The development and growth of adults has been central to her work. Where people are able to experience important (and transformational) shifts for themselves.


Whilst NZ was experiencing an economic downturn, Maria trusted her instincts and embarked on her first start-up business providing training and coaching services. Twelve years on, she has never looked back! She believes:


"Doing well has far more to do with attitude, effort and action first, more than anything else." 


The last seven years has included working closely across healthcare - designing and facilitating leadership, coaching and educator programmes for both clinical and non-clinical staff. Throughout this time she has lead both small and very large teams (of which some have been award winning); including learning projects of varying sizes and duration.


  • Certified mBIT Coach: Multiple Brain Integration Techniques 

  • Certified Life Coach: International Association of Coaching Institutes.

  • Certified Time Line Therapy (TM) Practitioner

  • Certified Eriksonian Hypnotherapist

  • Certified Master Practitioner & Trainer: Neurolinguistic Programming (NLP).

  • Certified Transforming Communication Instructor.

  • Certified Trainer & Facilitator.

  • Project management.

  • Oxford Women's Leadership. Saiid Business School, Oxford University.




Descended from Maori, Scottish, Irish and English ancestors Maria has had the joy of discovering her whakapapa (geneology) from these lineages. She greatly acknowledges all of her ancestors, their paths, and the differing worlds she is offered through them.

Maria's kuia Ngarongo Haimona was a tohunga (an adept healer). Through this line matakite exists not only with Maria but other family too. She recalls her earliest experience with wairua around the age of 5-years old. It wasn't until her late 20's however that Maria started to acknowledge these qualities. Since then her relationship with wairua has been quietly interwoven supporting her work, sense of knowing and general direction.

Maria has had the privilege of continuing her development and growth not only in traditional maori healing, but in other world views to traditional paths of healing. 


  • Mahi Wairua Practitioner. Tutored and mentored for 3-years by respected Tohunga Wiremu Niania and wife Lesley. Co-Author of the book, 'Collaborative and Indigenous Mental Health Therapy - Tataihono Stories of Maori Healing and Psychiatry'. 

  • Mediumship Development. Tutored by Kelvin Cruickshank. Contributor of 8-biographies detailing his experiences. 

  • Meditating with spirit guides. Mentored for 5 years with Rose Goodliffe. Masters of Social Practice including research on her practice as a trained counselor and medium. 

  • Zhineng Qigong practitioner (Chi Lei Chi Kung Levels 1 & 2) 

  • Healing light of the TAO (Master Mantak Chia's Universal Tao)

  • Shamanic journeying of the Hopi’sinom people (Hopi tribe of Native American Indians). 

  • Huna Healing (ancient Hawaiian healing traditionally known as Ho'omana).

A note from Maria:


Self-leadership, wellbeing and mauri ora


"In life I have experienced the rewards that come with effort and optimistic thinking, as well have had to face childhood trauma. I know first hand the dismantling impact that depression and anxiety can bring when continuously swept under the rug.


When we listen into ourselves, these situations afford insight, and tell us that we are not experiencing the life we want. This is our opportunity to pivot in another direction. To improve our situation. 


Having happiness in life is a personal experience defined by those who seek it. However, we know that being in the pursuit of ones hopes and dreams does bring momentary pleasures and contentment; along with how well we steer and navigate ourselves, how much we choose to take care of our health and well-being; and to what degree mauri ora (vitality) exists in the relationships we have with ourselves and the world around us.


We are experiencing a phase where our personal vitality, well-being and leadership of self is more important than ever. I am clear that each of us has the capability and inner strength to navigate towards those things that enrich our lives, even in times when feeling the most challenged, disempowered or without choice.

Working intuitively 


There is an important interplay between our physical, mental, emotional, spiritual, family, social and environmental well-being. Where there is a challenge or need in one area, there is likely a ripple effect into another. This means sometimes looking to  multiple avenues for a solution to life's problems.

Through my work here I am able to utilise what is within my range when working alongside you. I feel honoured to be able to do this. 

You are welcome to continue looking around the site where I share more.

With gratitude, Maria.