Our People

Shona Flannery

Shona Flannery – Manager and Owner

I have been working at Kinderen since 1992, both my children were ‘Kinderen Babies”. My sister Karen Vandenberg in 1986 first opened Kinderen, when she saw a need in the New Plymouth community for mothers returning to work and looking for a safe place of caring and warmth for their children. I have had the role is of administrator for many years and extended my role to CEO/Manager/Owner after Karen retired end of 2017, to continue the Kinderen way.

Kinderen will remain New Plymouth’s oldest family-run childcare business. “Thank you to my sister, Karen for teaching me all I know “.

“I enjoy my administration job! I enjoy watching the children grow and learn and knowing that it is our teachers nurturing and teaching that supports children to grow into kind, intelligent and self-confident people with the skills to make choices that make the best of what life can be.”

I’m the friendly voice on the end of the phone and have the answers to all the tricky questions!

Kinderen Team

–  Head Kaiako/Teacher


Sam Malcolm – Certified Kaiako/Teacher

Kia ora all! My name is Sam and I love working with young children and sharing their growths and accomplishments. Being able to see children form their own personalities and grow so much while they are in the centre is one of the most rewarding parts of my job. I am passionate about music and love to share this with the children throughout the curriculum. I have completed a Bachelor of Teaching and Learning in Early Childhood Education and have over 9 years of experience working with young children. Feel free to approach me with any questions or just to say hello, looking forward to meeting you and your children.

Sam Malcolm

Fiona Blackburn – Certified Kaiako/Teacher

After a previous 15 years teaching in early childhood centres, followed by a break to raise my two children, I am very privileged to be welcomed into the Kinderen family to teach in the infants and toddlers centre.

I am looking forward to sharing the journey with all our lovely children and their families as they grow, learn and discover the joys or life.

Fiona Blackburn

Diane Parli – Kaiako/Teacher 

Every day is – different – a fresh start – a new opportunity to…Learn * inspire * laugh * make somebody smile * try something new * look at something in a different way * follow your dreams * fight for what you believe in * bring out the best in someone * listen * talk * be creative * build bridges * heal wounds * solve a puzzle * hop, skip and jump and…Set it all to music.

Passion for teaching = passion for learning = passion for life

Diane Parli

Shahla Francis – Certified Kaiako/Teacher 

I believe that we are all born noble, so each of us must be treated with kindness, compassion, dignity and honour. Every one of us has something unique and wonderful to contribute to the betterment of the world. Each of us is as a mine rich in gems of inestimable value. Education is the key to unlocking that mine, discovering all those treasures, and allowing mankind to benefit therefrom.

Diane Parli

Sharon Aldworth—Kaiako/Teacher – 

I enjoy my job looking after children. I love seeing them grow and learn from experiencing the interaction with me and the other children. I respect their rights as ‘little people’. I encourage them to be independent, and to have fun whilst they are at Kinderen.

Yvonne Wilson – Certified Kaiako

Nikita Wildbore – Certified Kaiako

Nardayah Dial – Certified Kaiako

Chloe Hook – Certified Kaiako

Kylee Smith – Certified Kaiako

Katy Eastlake – Kaiako

Andy Flynn – Third year student

Bella Armes – Kaiako

Ramani Veepuri– Kaiako 

 Holly Sharrock – Kaiako kai – Little Centre

Wendy Watson – Kaiako kai – Preschool

Daniel Vandenberg

Daniel Vandenberg—Administration support

Daniel is our computer whiz—he can fix anything and is a quick and clever administration support team member. Daniel is constantly up-dating his knowledge regarding ECE programmes in New Zealand and keeps Kinderen’s technology running smoothly in both centres.