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Innovations Catalyst

Ember Innovations

Job details

Ember Korowai Takitini
19 Jun 2022
Work type
Part time employment
Work classification
Education & Development, Management & Admin, Marketing & Media


Ember Innovations are looking for an innovative, inspired and Innovations Catalyst to create systems change within the Mental Wellbeing and Substance Harm Space

Ko wai te whānau nei  - Who are we?

Ember Innovations are a team of experienced social innovation and systems strategists, entrepreneurs and mental wellbeing experts. We partner with people, organisations and communities that are ambitious to implement new ideas that add value for better mental wellbeing

Our mission is to support entrepreneurs and start-ups to innovate within the mental health, substance harm, addiction, recovery and wellbeing space.

We are working to ensure that every person in Aotearoa can access their choice of wellbeing supports, by investing our energy in innovators to develop and scale high-impact, equitable offerings.

We’re building a community of innovators, start-ups and entrepreneurs, supporting them to succeed, catalysing capital and advocating for a more inclusive and innovative mental health system.

Te kōwhiringa – The opportunity

Innovation Catalyst – Support Pou

(we will work with you and Te Ahi Kā, our Ember group Maturanga Māori Rōpū to choose an appropriate ingoa Māori that matches your role and personal qualities)

This is a unique role, within a unique organisation. It will require an adaptable, optimistic and passionate person who is able to open their mind, connect well with others, translate innovator needs into tangible supports and resources and convert creative ideas into tangible prototypes and experiments.

He kai kei ōu ringa – Your skills and potential

We are currently looking for an Innovation Catalyst to help our team connect the dots and create systems change in the world of Mental Health and Wellbeing.

You will be part of small and agile team working nationally and sometimes internationally to influence broader system dynamics and contribute to these team outcomes:

  • Increased advocacy for mental health, addiction and wellbeing innovation
  • Challenges are tackled through co-design and collective action
  • Innovators, entrepreneurs and enterprises have access to capacity and learning to improve the quality and impact of interventions
  • Entrepreneurs and innovators working to improve mental health and wellbeing are enabled, connected and supported in an active network
  • Information and insights are collected, collated and acted upon to address specific unmet needs & barriers

Your mission will be to develop a strong understanding of the needs and challenges faced by people attempting to innovate inside and outside the system, and to use the knowledge and insights collected by the team to create tangible support structures and resources that will support and nurture innovators.

In this role you will use a wide range of skills, from prototyping and project management to training design and resource creation. This role is ideally suited to someone with experience in one or more of the following; business support and mentoring,  education resource creation and design, technical tools development, human-centred design or UX.

We are growing a strong, diverse team, so a commitment to actioning the articles of te Tiriti in your everyday work, knowledge of te Aō Māori and Pacific worldview as well as indigenous models of wellbeing and design, and the passion to connect with and weave together the best of all cultures in Aotearoa will be an essential element of the role.

Apart from your professional skills, your most important qualities will be your collective and holistic world view, and your ability to connect with kindness to communities/ hapori, innovators, mātau ā-wheako (those with lived experience) and Whānau in order to support their innovation needs.

Navigating your own personal lived experience of mental health addiction challenges, or supporting someone close to you may be the reason that makes this mahi so important to you, and whilst it’s not essential for the role, we highly value the wisdom that comes with this lived experience.

Kei te whakapono mātau ki tō whanaketanga! If you have some of these things but need to develop in other areas, that’s ki te pai, we want to develop you to grow.


  • Delivering the KPI’s of our “Support” pou
  • Work in partnership with our Catalyst – Connect to understand the support needs of our community of innovators and develop tangible tools, training, resources and referrals to help them.
  • Join the team in a journey to use te reo and tikanga in our everyday practice and approach.
  • Develop a deep understanding of the challenges innovators are facing and work with the whole team to resolve these barriers
  • Develop our understanding of system dynamics and how we might be able to present this information is clear meaningful ways to a range of stakeholders
  • Bring our great ideas to life through prototypes, events, workshops and webinars -  connecting the right people to catalyse action
  • Be an integral part of envisioning, planning and implementing Innovation events

Skills that would be great to have:

  • A strong understanding of kaupapa Maori, especially how systems change approaches grounded in Matauranga Maori have been implemented.
  • A passion to support our tāngata Tiriti kaimahi to weave mātauranga Māori into our day-to-day through your own personal knowledge or connections
  • You find joy in interacting with a diverse range of people and thrive in helping to address their needs
  • You have a beginner's mind that allows you to see challenges from fresh perspectives and come up with unique solutions
  • A background in one or more of the following; business support and mentoring,  education resource creation and design, training and facilitation, technical tools development, human-centred design or UX.


Key deliverables:

  • Develop a support-needs analysis tool with our other catalyst to collect insights that will allow useful resources to be created
  • Work with innovators and entrepreneurs to co-design a suite of helpful resources, training, funding pathways and knowledge support referrals
  • Work with our advisors and stakeholders to build an accreditation framework that gives investors and entrepreneurs confidence in the quality, safety and impact of their innovation

Role – Part-time, 24 hours per week


How to apply

If you are interested, please contact us in an “innovative” way by emailing


Written by

Ember Korowai Takitini

23 May 2022