Note: in the following story names and identifying details have been changed to protect the service user’s identity
I’ve been wanting to change since my babies were born – and I have. But there’s some things I still go back to.”
Since being released from his last stint, the 35-year-old’s been arrested for breaching his bail conditions numerous times, and even he concedes he should be in jail now. But the 35-year-old doesn’t want to go back. He’s had enough. And he says being on the Hāpai Huānga programme is a positive step for him.
“Ever since Tiheni and Chrissy (paeārahi) turned up at my house, good things have been happening in my life – I don’t know where to start.
“I have trust issues, but I clicked with Pat. I’ve done taiaha before, so I just got to enjoy it. There’s heaps of aroha and the boys are going hard. They’re willing to stick with you the whole way, and you help each other as a team.”
“I want to get as much as I can from this programme, including a different circle of friends. It would be mean if my bros could come but they’re just a bit shy.”
While others on the programme have confessed to having low self-esteem, Wiremu was at the other end of the scale. He suspects it contributed to some of his previous decisions, however he has a positive attitude and is looking forward to his new approach on life.
“I had heaps of confidence – maybe too much. But now I’m trying to do things differently. When you’re given the opportunity to do things differently, take it. But yes, I’ve had some shit days. And a man gets tired eventually. They say, ‘a leopard can’t change its spots’, but it can, and it does.”