Unboxing the Kiwi Bank Local Hero of the Year Medalist 2024
Dunedin, New Zealand - After spending a remarkable 17 years at Cadbury's, Megan Fairley, former Manager of a dedicated team of staff, faced the challenge of the company's closure head-on. Determined to chart her own path, she ventured into the world of entrepreneurship, only to encounter unexpected hurdles and discrimination as a former factory worker. However, Megan's unwavering spirit and commitment to making a difference never wavered.
Undeterred by the negativity, Megan single-handedly started not one, but two successful businesses. Furthermore, she rallied together a group of former Cadbury's employees, now known as Project Hope & Beyond, forming an incredible fundraising team. This dynamic group embarked on a journey to raise funds for mental health and the wellbeing of New Zealanders, a cause close to Megan's heart.
Through their collective efforts, Project Hope & Beyond raised an awe-inspiring $60,000, demonstrating the true power of unity and compassion. Leading by example, Megan, now affectionately known as the "Chocolate Queen," has become a beacon of hope and inspiration for many.
In recognition of her unwavering determination and community impact, Megan Fairley has been honoured as a Kiwi Bank New Zealand Local Hero Medalist for a second consecutive year. This prestigious award highlights her exceptional commitment to advocating for mental health and raising awareness.
Despite facing abuse and adversity along their fundraising journey, Megan and her team approached every challenge with resilience and unwavering dedication. They refused to be discouraged by those attempting to undermine their efforts, instead adhering to the motto Megan herself adopted for her team: "When people are nasty and cruel, don't stoop to their level. No, when they go low, we go high."
Megan's passion for supporting mental health stems from her own personal struggles with depression throughout her life. Her experiences were further compounded after being made redundant from Cadbury's and encountering bullying and conspiracies that aimed to derail her entrepreneurial ventures. However, Megan's determination to make a positive impact only grew stronger, inspiring others to follow suit.
As Megan Fairley continues her fight for mental health and the wellbeing of New Zealanders, she remains an indomitable force, leading by example and inspiring others to persevere despite the challenges they may face. Her unwavering commitment to her cause embodies the true spirit of resilience and empowerment.
Thank you so much to all the amazing people who have supported me throughout this incredibly tough Journey, so incredibly grateful for all of your continued support.
Luv Megan xx Chocolate Queen