Securing Investment To Realise Her Dreams

Awa Wahine | Ataria Sharman Success Stories

“I attended the Pakihi marketing workshop in search of a sustainable business model for my online magazine, Awa Wahine. At that time, it was more a hobby than a business and took up a lot of my time too. Barbara Jacques was the facilitator, and she was energetic and knowledgeable. I went away from that workshop with a whole page filled with ideas. More so than that, I was inspired to keep searching for ways to turn my hobby into a business.

A few months later, Barbara and I met for our mentoring session (which is part of the Pakihi workshop package), and I had at that time secured a client, which was exciting. During our meeting, I mentioned Creative New Zealand had a pool of funding that Awa Wahine was eligible to put in an application. Barbara told me to go for it! I sat on it for a while, feeling unsure and unconfident that the funding panel would see the value in the services I provide for wāhine Māori creatives. But Barbara’s words kept ringing in my head.


I got my application in the day it closed. Several months passed and I didn’t hear anything. Then Barbara offered me a ticket to attend the Whangarei Women’s business networking dinner. The weekend before the dinner I heard back from Creative New Zealand, and Awa Wahine was successful in securing nearly $40,000 in funding! The funding is to provide services for wāhine Māori creatives both online and in regional areas of Aotearoa over the next 12 months. When I attended the dinner, I made sure to tell Barbara as I don’t know if I would’ve put in the application if she hadn’t told me to go for it. Thank you Pakihi and Barbara!”

– Ataria Sharman, Founder of Awa Wahine

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