Purposefully guiding groups through robust, collaborative processes to achieve effective outcomes

The Groundwork team creates a supportive environment for groups of diverse people to constructively explore ideas and issues. People often have a wide range of needs, expectations, personalities and roles. Our facilitated processes result in a high level of support for agreed outcomes, paving the way for effective actions.

Our team can:  

  • develop collaborative and participatory processes to support group decision making 
  • conduct community and stakeholder consultation
  • design and deliver experiential learning events  
  • design and deliver community and stakeholder engagement
  • manage projects and events

Projects we've worked on

Focusing research and prioritising goals


The PEATWISE research team wanted to connect and collaborate with a broader and more diverse stakeholder community, to help focus their research and prioritise their goals.

Groundwork designed and facilitated a process to gain input from stakeholders and produced a report for the research team.

Supporting ecological trust establishment and community consultation

Maungatautari Ecological Island Trust (MEIT)

Groundwork played an integral role in establishing and developing MEIT, working with them to clarify objectives, develop functions and integrate participatory methods into their work. MEIT needed an efficient, effective, low cost way to consult a wide range of stakeholders on its plan for New Zealand’s largest predator proof sanctuary.

Groundwork led a year long engagement programme to establish community partnerships. This included training local volunteers in facilitation to minimise costs and completing a massive community consultation exercise in a relatively short time.

We’ve used and referred back to that work continuously since it was done…Whenever we’ve looked at another step forward we’ve gone back and checked over whatever people’s views were at the time and made sure we’ve stayed in line with those views – so the work’s been very valid right up until the present.
Jim Mylchreest, MEIT

Developing the NZ Human Rights Strategy

Human Rights Commission

The Human Rights Commission needed to consult extensively and consistently with the public to develop a national human rights action plan for New Zealand.

Groundwork helped receive input from over 5,000 people nationwide by training 15 Human Rights Commission staff in participatory appraisal consultation methods and supporting them during the consultation process. Groundwork also facilitated consultation with people in rural Waikato.

We found Groundwork’s services [to be] tailored to the client and the project. Friendly, innovative, flexible…[and] empowering – because Annie actually teaches people to share the knowledge and the tools.
Kathy Lys (formerly Human Rights Commission)

Streamlining effective interagency responses to pest plant incursions

Waikato Regional Council

The council wanted to strengthen its connections with and improve the effectiveness of stakeholders involved in identifying and managing pest plant incursions.

Groundwork worked with the council to identify key stakeholders and design a workshop for them, resulting in production of a response flowchart, defining interagency responsibilities and roles on notification of weed incursions.

It was great to have Annie facilitate [the workshop] and then have a couple of others on the fringe making sure all the information was being collected, nothing lost – that was pretty great. Annie’s really good at understanding the industry, so when I’m trying to explain things or when things come out in the workshop, she’s very good at knowing what we’re talking about.
Darion Embling, Pest Plants Biosecurity Officer, Waikato Regional Council