The HTA Charitable Trust was set up in 1994 to maximize people’s potential through arts and sport. 

We're about saying yes and getting on with it, despite the obstacles.

What we do:

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  • Use sports and arts disciplines as rehabilitation tools to empower and educate underprivileged and socially disadvantaged youth. 

  • Run therapeutic/educational rehabilitation programs for people who are socially, physically or mentally challenged. 

  • Assist participants in gaining confidence through realizing their ability and potential. 

  • Promote interactive educational, social and cultural awareness.

  • Produce sports programs/performing arts/art projects in local communities to encourage heightened community and individual awareness. 

  • Individual and group therapy. Psychotherapeutic module, to look at individuals personal issues and come to a position of understanding and self acceptance through, psychodrama, metaphor clay work, play back theatre, dramatherapy, counselling, spectrograms, and projective techniques

Who we are:

Uniquely, the Trusts work is driven by a highly qualified and trained professional drama therapist with over thirty years experience in the field. The Trust also uses a talent base of professional actors, teachers, youth mentors and musicians, supplemented by the input of dedicated volunteers to provide experiences that educate, support, and nurture people.

The Team:


Maxine Donnellan - Director of Trust (BADth, ROth, ADCA, LTCL, BA HUM) Clinical and consultant Therapist. Currently works as a Drama Therapist. She has worked Extensively in NZ, Australia, UK, with challenged youth. She runs regular workshops on self-development for youth. She combines dance, drama, art and therapy to enhance the therapeutic aspect of the trust.



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Terry Axford - Youth Mentor Terry Axford’s focus is working with youth in arts and sports programs. A foundation member of the HTA Trust, Terry helps young people find the confidence in themselves to address their fears, build on their passions, exceed their expectations and take responsibility as leaders for their peers. 



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Siobhan Hollings - Siobhan Hollings Producer of HTA, Costume designer Puppeteer, Siobhan has worked in the trust since 1994 with a focus on developing self-esteem anti bullying shows. Siobhan keeps the HTA Trust on track with her strong production skills. Siobhan has a Diploma in Clothing and Textile Design from Wellington Unitec.


Nikki Bennet -Nikki Bennet Actor, director and entertainer,.Nikki has performed directed and devised work in NZ and around the world, taking her craft to the street, main stage, on screen and to the high seas. Nikki Graduated from the prestigious Ecole Philippe Gaulier and is excited to bring her skills into the world of Healing through Arts .Nikki Has worked on successful community projects with the trust and enjoys the challenge that comes from these powerful projects.

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Ash Jones -Ash Jones Actor and storyteller working in and around the Auckland area. From working on-screen with Geoffrey Rush and Kate Bosworth in American action films to working as a lead with Auckland Theatre Company, Ash is known for creating his own works, making a successful comedy show in 2009 and devising international works with Massive Theatre Company. Ash loves working with all ages to encourage healing and self-expression. 


Justin Haiu - Justin Haiu is a dancer, teacher, actor and performance extraordinaire. Runner- up on NZ’s ‘So you think you can dance’ where he showcased his dance genres. Justin has a background in street theatre and b-boying/hiphop performance, pioneering the revival of break- dancing in NZ. His formal training was at Brent Street School of Performing Arts in Sydney before becoming a cast member of Disney's Theatre Production 'The Lion King'.He has worked alongside NZ's leading choreographer Michael Parmenter, Justin toured with Black Grace Dance Company, Red leap theatre company, and white face crew.