Karen Pattie

Karen Pattie

Manager / Senior Advocate


Degree in Education and Psychology

Arts degree: Painting and Sculpture

Cert Counselling

Cert Community and social work

ASSIST cert suicide prevention

Registered Marriage Celebrant

Registered Teacher

Board experience

Parent Centre, Government Kindergarten, and Child care.

Work experience

I have worked at BAIS for the past 14 years as advocate and manager. Prior to this I taught on the Hibiscus coast and in Samoa. I ran my own business as a practicing artist for 7 years. Prior to this I worked as a teacher/head Teacher, counsellor and worked for CYPF’S.

Personal statement

I am committed to contributing to community and believe that all groups in our culture should be represented with dignity and respect. Having raised three children as a solo parent, the challenges of family budgeting housing etc. is not unfamiliar. I understand the need for support from the wider community and have a passion for my role as advocate.

Jacqui Smith

Jacqui Smith


  • NZQA Level 3 First Line Management
  • NZQA Level 4 Adult Education and Training
  • NZQA Level 4 Public Sector Service
  • Diploma in Travel & Tourism 
  • ASIST certificate in suicide first aid 
  • Certified Life Coach  

Personal Comment

I have been with BAIS since December 2015. Before this I was 10 years at Work and Income in a senior position training staff. My extensive product knowledge of Work and Income Policy has provided me with the foundation to provide solid information to support vulnerable people in my advocacy role.

As a single parent of 2 children (both now young adults) I remember how daunting it was to apply for DPB when my marriage ended with two young children (they were 2 & 4 years old at the time). Before becoming a mum I had 10 years working in the banking industry. Being a “Beneficiary” was foreign to me and my family. After learning to budget on a very restricted income I wanted to use my experience to be able to help others. I completed my certificate in Life Coaching and had started my small business as a coach. When I saw an advert for a Case Manager it ticked all the boxes of what I was wanting to achieve with the security of a regular income. After 10 years I was ready for a change when the opportunity to be an Advocate presented itself with additional bonus of learning Fundraising. I enjoy the challenges of a dual role and I am confident in being able to continue to secure funding to provide a free advocacy service to those in need.

Sophie Pereira

Sophie Pereira

Administrator/ Fundraising/ Advocate

Hi, my name is Sophie and my role at BAIS, is Administration/ Fundraising/Advocate. Previous to working for BAIS I worked as a Case Manager for many years at The Ministry of Social Development.

I have a wealth of knowledge in financial entitlements within the New Zealand benefit system and the extra help that is available for our special needs children/ Rangatahi.  Naturally I gravitate towards those that need help, so working for a not-for-profit community organisation has been extremely rewarding.