RAW On-the-Outside offers an unprecedented level of support to enable wahine to start a journey of re-integrating back into the community and building a legal life for themselves and their tamariki.

RAW’S multi-layered support model starts pre-release before moving beyond the prison gates with safe accommodation based in the Waikato, mentoring, education scholarships and/or employment opportunities.  Each of these layers had been carefully chosen to counteract the reintegration barriers that each woman faced as soon as they left the prison gates.


In May 2019, RAW opened a new centre of care located in the small rural town of Te Aroha.  This centre provides all newly released wahine with the optimal space to settle, stabilise and begin their reintegration journey.  Called HE HAUMARU [The Sanctuary], its purpose is to create a highly supportive and supported living and learning environment where wahine can have the time and space to:


Build fundamental social, communication and lifestyle skills


Shed institutionalised behaviour and thinking


Get ready for full reintegration without distraction

He Haumaru is a continuation of the RAW community that each woman has been immersed in prior to her release. Once again, He Haumaru is community-led and self-governing, with a highly functional RAW woman living on-site and supporting the smooth running of the centre in accordance with the principles that the community has developed.


“We want our new releases to be busy, tired and joyful at the end of each day at the Sanctuary. We want them to experience joy from their surroundings, their learning experiences and the emergence of new lifestyle behaviours. We believe joy and keeping active will be the secret to their early reintegration success in contrast to deprivation and house rules which to date hasn’t been effective”

Rebecca Skilton
Rebecca Skilton, Clinical Operations Manager, RAW


In 2019 RAW is looking to extend the reach and magnitude of its social impact by providing disadvantaged women, emerging from an incarcerated environment, with the very best opportunity to upskill and prosper in the Auckland market through a social enterprise structure. Called ‘The Butterfly Project’, this project enables RAW to leverage all the learnings and experience set of the charity’s existing employer collaborations, along with the commercial expertise of the charity’s founder, to lift the social impact that it can facilitate in New Zealand’s biggest market – Auckland.

The Butterfly Project will enable RAW to establish a highly supportive and supported Learning and Earning community where the women can go to:


Build confidence, skills and pro-social connections to enable them to prosper with purpose in Auckland.


Feel a strong sense of connection and belonging; respected for who they are and who they want to become, not judged and excluded because of where they’ve been.