Library and Information Association of New Zealand Aotearoa
Te Rau Herenga O Aotearoa


The Hikuwai Region extends from The Bombay Hills, north to Cape Reinga, the tip of the North Island.

Our role is to connect and be a voice for information professionals in the Hikuwai region. We deliver opportunities for entertainment and edification and support the wider activities of LIANZA, providing regional input into national activities and thinking.

The name Hikuwai means "The tail fish of Maui" and reflects the importance we give to biculturalism, and the geographical range of our region beyond the confines of Auckland. The name was adopted after LIANZA Auckland Region members voted overwhelmingly to change the name from "Auckland Region" in October/November of 1999.


LIANZA Professional Registration Rundown

Saturday April 13, 11am-12:30pm

Elizabeth Yates Room at the Ellen Melville Centre

2 Freyburg Place, Auckland Central

Come and join other library and information professionals at the first LIANZA Professional Registration Rundown. You will learn about some changes planned for the professional registration scheme, and be suported by LIANZA Professional Registration Board member, Tracy Maniapoto and other colleagues to draft some of your reflective journal entries. This event is a fantastic opprtunity to learn more about professional registration, network and connect with other librarians.



Auckland Central City Library Basement Tour

Wednesday April 17, 12-1pm

44-46 Lorne Street, Auckland Central

The Hikuwai committee is offering the opportunity to explore the stack collecion located in the milti-level basement of the Central City Library. Library staff will guide visitors through some of the weird and wonderful items in the collection. This is a great chance to view some of the incredible books that are not usually on public display.

Places are limited, contact to reserve a place.


Spring Seminar

Come along to the Hikuwai Spring Seminar.

We will hear from colleagues who have been to recent conferences in New Zealand and overseas, learn about research work from the recipient of the LIANZA David Wylie award, brush up on our Te Reo and discus the IFLA Global Vision.

The seminar will be followed by the AGM at 1pm (there will be a separate announcement for this).


Where: Grey Lynn Library Hall

When: Saturday 22 Sep 10am – 12pm

Cost: $20pp includes light lunch

BOK clusters: primarily 1, 2 & 6


Hikuwai in conversation with Glenn Davidson, Team leader for Outreach Services, Whangarei Libraries

Q: What’s happening in Whangarei Libraries?

This summer we felt busy, visits continue to grow and steadily increase. The nature of our work is changing - we notice more demand in assistance with computers, printing, downloading. Our information desk on the ground level gets most of these enquiries. There are less people seeking traditional information requests. This library is a destination to meet, to do technology, to engage in a group or a community.

Q: Then there is a new mobile library van…

We got a new mobile library van in June 2017 as an accumulation of a few-year project. We realised that our big old bus was approaching the end of its life span. We knew we wanted a new mobile library but we questioned what sort of vehicle. We elected to go for a smaller vehicle, a motorhome type, drivable on a car licence. We spent some time debating pros and cons among the team, including the feeling that a smaller vehicle may seem like a reduction in service. We kept this in mind and certainly we didn’t want to reduce the service nor lose customers.

We wanted to make the most of the space of the vehicle. We came with an idea to make it “an amazing space” like George Clarke’s TV programme – even a smaller vehicle can have a wow factor. The service goes to a lot of preschools so we wanted the same excitement from the kids of “WOW, the library bus is coming!” We incorporated some features like a mirrored ceiling and coloured lights. The old vehicle stocked 2000 items, this new vehicle can stock up to 1600 and most customers are happy. We made an effort to communicate with our customers to warn them we were getting a smaller vehicle as nobody wants to be “downsized” or surprised at the same time. The Whangarei District Council was supportive of this project – they councillors came for a visit once the new vehicle was ready. Overall we are happy with the project. There are always things I would do differently and it is an ongoing work.

We constantly review the places we visit and our timetables. Our next step is to talk to people. We noticed that less people in rest homes come to the mobile so we want to find out why. We now set up mini-libraries in the rest home lounges. We also want to approach people who never come and find out what would make them visit and use the library.

Q: How did the RFID implementation go?

RFID arrived to Whangarei Libraries – 2017 saw this big project taking place. It’s been great but there have been some technology challenges. RFID speeds up processes and we took advantage of it: we removed an issuing desk and turned it into a laptop bar, we channel customer enquires at the information desk on the opposite side. The challenge is educating customers how to use the new technology. Some people love doing things themselves while some need support. Interestingly some customers were worried about our jobs when we moved the Issues desk. We trialled a smart return shelf however we went back to the traditional way of handling returned material. A combination of factors like technology not fit for the way we work and customers not trusting it contributed to this decision. It’s good to try new things otherwise how would you know.

Q: Wearing your outreach hat, tell us more about your work.

Wearing my outreach hat, I wanted to talk about connecting with our community: bringing people in for programmes or pushing out into the community with the mobile library. Like attending events on weekends and we copied the Auckland Libraries beach bus idea, focusing on the positive PR. And we are asking people what they want and whether the offer meets expectations. We have been adding to our programmes. There are the ongoing preschool sessions, school holiday programmes, reading groups, and there are new ones like Flash Fiction Club, Poetry Club and Craft Club – we see people attending regularly.

My colleague Jannie who facilitates the craft club says: “The ladies are looking forward to coming to the Craft Club because it is such a good group, someone brought some else along, also there is a mother and daughter who live on the boat. The club includes learning new skills every other month but now one lady is teaching the daughter hand spinning. So, it is not only that the staff who provide learning but other people share their talent in the group. They go out afterwards buying material for the class and to make the craft they just learnt. This is a community group – having skills and sharing them.” We focus on facilitating these learning opportunities and making this Library space truly a community space.

Another programme the staff have started is “Mix and Jingles” – where groups from rest homes come in their vans to Central Library. We provide some music and a guest speaker or entertainment and they socialise over a cuppa – it’s been popular and successful.

This new Central Library built over a decade ago has enabled all the above to happen.

Q: What are the short and long term goals?

In the short term, 6 months, the goal is to settle with the new RFID technology and software.

In the longer term we want to continue the outreach, connecting with the community, keep doing what works among the community, doing it well.

For me, short term – reviewing the mobile library destinations and timetable; also the children’s space is due for an upgrade.

Long term – keeping up with the programmes and making them sustainable, for example the teen computing club.

Q: If you were to present at the Hikuwai Weekend School…

If I was to present at the Hikuwai Weekend School we would present on the mobile library project, makerspace, clubs and programmes. I look forward to it.


Group for the LIANZA Hikuwai Region

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