Interview with Miraka, Relay For Life Committee Member

Can you introduce yourself and share why you joined the Relay For Life committee?

Tēnā koutou katoa, Ko Miraka Norgate tōku ingoa, I have been part of Relay For life for 23 years. Growing up with my father battling Lung Cancer, I witnessed the suffering and the lack of understanding surrounding this disease.

Joining the Relay For Life Committee has been a rewarding journey for me. Contributing to this fundraising event brings me a sense of fulfillment, knowing that we can provide financial support to whānau, easing the burden of personal incidentals.

Over the years, I’ve had the privilege of being part of the Relay For Life Committee, and I genuinely enjoy supporting this kaupapa. The connections I’ve made and the exceptional Cancer Society Managers I’ve worked with, now onto the fourth, have all been outstanding to date.

Is there a personal connection to cancer that motivates your involvement?

I know many of us are touched by Cancer, I have lost many of my whānau, Dad, brothers and sisters to this ngārara, only last week a cousin of mine was buried in our urupā (cemetery) because of Breast Cancer, only 56 years old. Aue te mamae.

What specific role do you play on the Relay For Life committee?

For this Relay For Life (16/17 March 2024), I’m supporting our Masseuse to come on board to offer their magical hands on our aching bodies as we pound that track. This will be part of the Relay For Life Health Promotional Display.

Can you share a memorable moment from a past Relay For Life event?

One particular year, the event took place on Tahunanui Field, and despite the challenging conditions that left us walking in ankle-deep mud, it turned out to be the best experience. Even though we initially thought about packing up and going home, everyone displayed incredible spirit by staying and completing the event. It was a testament to the resilience and camaraderie of all participants.

What advice would you offer to individuals contemplating involvement in or support for the cause?

If the journey of a loved one in your whānau has been touched by cancer, we encourage you to engage and support this meaningful kaupapa. Our dedicated manager and staff at the Cancer Society Nelson Tasman create a warm and welcoming environment, supported by numerous wonderful volunteers who generously contribute their time. Regardless of your age, we would be delighted to hear from you.

Interested in Relay For Life Nelson Tasman, or would like to know more visit