Coming to NZ for work



Elainee and Nichelle, from the Philippines, are Registered Nurses who came to NZ and Te Hopai in 2021. Elainee came direct from the Philippines with her husband and 2 daughters, while Nichelle was working in Singapore but was able to reunite with her husband and son when they moved to NZ. Here are their stories.



My husband wanted to go to Australia, but I said - why not NZ, it’s a great place to raise kids, more laid back. I had heard about Te Hopai through a colleague and was hired in July 21, but getting out of the Philippines was hard, there was a big process. Te Hopai waited. I was very grateful and finally arrived in Dec 2021. I applied to lots of places but Te Hopai was the first company to offer me a job. Others contacted me but weren’t prepared to wait.

My interview was kind of funny. I got confused about the skype time and wasn’t prepared and flustered. Jill (Nurse Manager) said to me to re-schedule so I would be more relaxed. I thought I had blown it, but she was so nice.

My colleague said that Te Hopai had good training and good induction process. I hadn’t worked in Aged Care before so that was important to me (Background in renal/dialysis care). Everyone has been very supportive and helped me through the process. I saw on the website a staff story saying the person had been employed 10 years – I was impressed and thought they must be very good to staff to have someone stay so long.

It was a real leap of faith coming. But I'm happy I did. Te Hopai is really supportive of clinical growth, the training is very good. I like how everyone is treated equally. I also really appreciate the family friendly approach, very supportive and work life balanced.


It’s very hard to get to NZ from the Philippines, but I was working in Singapore and its easier from there. It’s also easier to get a NZ practising certificate via Singapore. I was working in Singapore and my husband was in Philippines with our son. Coming to NZ as a family meant we could be together.

I got a job in Auckland first but was half-hearted about it. They had no warmth and were not very welcoming. The location not good for housing. I applied to lots of places and Te Hopai contacted me. Everyone was much friendlier and I liked that I had a skype interview, some employers only telephoned and it was hard to gain an impression just over the phone.

I got the best salary offer from Te Hopai, but also Te Hopai was the only company at the time that offered to pay for some of my expenses. 

Te Hopai is so family friendly! I can get flexible shifts to fit in with my husband so we can share childcare. He works at the Hospital as a nurse and he doesn’t have the same flexibility. The salary is competitive and I like the small community of staff and knowing our residents. I come to work looking forward to it. My job in Singapore was so stressed and I didn’t like going to work – now I do.

Read more staff stories