Current News

RMTC reaches record number of clients!


Our primary aim here at the Centre is to provide music therapy for all in need. We were therefore thrilled to provide music therapy sessions to 219 clients per week in September – a record number for the Centre. Our aim is to continue to expand our service, as we have over our 13 year history.

It has become increasingly apparent over the years that we need to take music therapy out into the community. We have fifteen outreach partnerships whereby we work with schools and organisations. But a huge area of success has been our satellites where we truly provide our services right across Auckland. Our original satellite in Titirangi now operates one and a half days per week, and was followed by Orewa and Otara. To cater further to demand, in October we opened a satellite in Pukekohe which was almost fully subscribed even before the doors opened! Tori Gac is there each Friday offering individual and group sessions and has a couple of spots still available. 

Individual sessions are the foundation of our service delivery model but we also provide pair and, increasingly, group sessions. One such group programme is Tune In, launched last year to great success. Tune In is jointly led by a Speech-Language Therapist and music therapist with the goal of helping children to develop both communication and social skills through engaging musical activities.

Our Tune In group was featured in the fabulous video produced by Million Dollar Mission and can be viewed on our Facebook page or on You Tube by following this link. We are developing more collaborative ventures as part of our programming - check out our article on Kids Jam below

Thank you to all our supporters for helping us achieve these record results. 

You truly are helping us to change lives through music.


Kids are jamming at AUT

Our newest collaboration ran in Term 3 this year in conjunction with AUT’s School of Interprofessional Health.

Kids’ Jam, the first paediatric health programme for AUT, as well as their first collaboration with music therapy, was for children aged 6-10 who needed further opportunities to practice social skills and engage with their peers.  This programme was jointly run by RMTC music therapist Tori Gac, along with students and faculty from occupational therapy, physio therapy and the nursing departments.

Kids_Jam            NZMF_Logo

Thanks to the support of New Zealand Music Foundation Kids’ Jam was free of charge, allowing us to offer the majority of spaces to children from a local Decile 1 school. We had some fantastic feedback about the programme, including this from a mother of one of the participants:

I think you all do an amazing job … I knew it would be a safe place for him where he would be supported, encouraged and that he would really enjoy!

October School Holiday Programmes

The recent school holidays proved to be the busiest on record for the Centre. As well as offering a whopping 58 make up and extra sessions, which kept our therapists very busy, we also launched a couple of new programmes.



The two sessions of Find Your Beat, our dynamic new drumming group, were thoroughly enjoyed by those who attended. Open to clients, siblings, friends and family, the group enjoyed the opportunity to express themselves creatively in a fun, energetic and welcoming environment. 


The Instrument Petting Zoo, run over two days at the Centre, was an opportunity to pop into the Centre to explore the instruments with a music therapist. We were thrilled to have friends and family join clients in the Instrument Petting Zoo, and welcomed some new clients along too!

Thank you for everyone who attended the sessions in the holidays – you can be certain these programmes will be returning next year! 

Changes to the RMTC whanau

There have been a few changes to the RMTC whanau over the last few months. In September we bid a fond farewell to Min-Min who has headed off to provide music therapy in China and we wish her all the best. And in October Wei-kai completed his internship and we hope that his thesis writing is going well.

Wei-kai was not our only intern last year, as working alongside him was Tori Gac taking part in our first ever international student placement. Tori completed her studies in July and the Centre was thrilled when she accepted a permanent role here. Soon after we welcomed recent graduate from Victoria University Katie Boom to the Clinical team and most recently we have welcomed Cally Castell on Reception. All three share their insights so far below.

As many of our supporters will know we have also had some recent changes to the management team, with Carol White, outgoing Executive Director, leaving in June this year. The Centre was delighted when Jen Ryckaert, who had joined the Centre in August 2015, accepted the role of Clinical and Centre Director. Stepping up to this new role will allow Jen to continue to be involved with the day to day clinical services whilst working strategically to help, as Board Chairman Sean Coleman said, “grow and deliver our own special brand of music therapy to service an ever growing need.” Jen is thrilled to be supported in the role by Rachel Farrell who steps up to the new role of Finance and Administration Manager, and of course by the extraordinarily talented team of music therapists we have here at the Centre. Thanks to everyone for their support during the time of transition.

Katie Boom – Music Therapist


Returning to New Zealand after three months travelling through Asia and Europe, I was so excited to begin working at Raukatauri Music Therapy Centre. I landed back in NZ in September, and promptly began getting to know the Centre and all of the wonderful people in the Raukatauri whanau. Although I was born and raised in the Waikato, I studied in Wellington, completing my Master in Music Therapy degree with first class honours in 2017. Now I live in sunny, beach-laden Northland. The commute down to Grey Lynn each week isn’t great, I’ll admit, but the reasons for it are fantastic. Challenge, change and precious moments are part of each day here at RMTC. Thank you to the team of staff and volunteers for their thoughtful, funny and kind support, and thank you to my wonderful clients and families for your friendly welcomes and music-making. One of the many highlights so far is being part of the self-named Rock’n’Roll Fairy Princesses – a band which is not shy of being heard! 


Tori Gac – Music Therapist 

      Tory Gac_opt

As I am writing this, it is hard to believe that it has been 4 months since I started working at Raukatauri. Since day one of arriving in New Zealand, the Raukatauri whanau has supported my exciting and enlightening international experience in this wonderful corner of the world. When I found out I was staying to work, I was beyond ecstatic and overjoyed to keep on growing and learning at the same place that trained me and cultivated my love for music therapy. The team, clients and their families have all been very supportive and their kindness has helped me ease my way into my new role of music therapist from my previous role of student intern. I am looking forward to continuing to gain inspiration from clients and the Raukatauri team!


Cally Castell - Receptionist


I joined Raukatauri Music Therapy Centre just one month ago – so am officially the newbie of the team! Since I walked through the door I have been overwhelmed by everyone’s kindness, positivity and warmth. I’ve been freelancing in the performing arts industry for the past few years, and joined RMTC straight off performing in the national tour of The Sound Of Music. When I’m not behind the reception desk at RMTC (my hours here are part time) I am singing, singing teaching, acting or writing – currently in the midst of composing a musical, my biggest project yet! As I settle in at RMTC, I most look forward to getting to know all the clients and their families. Music therapy is something that has been on my radar (particularly as a singing teacher) for a while, and I feel so lucky to have the opportunity to be here, and am in awe of the knowledgeable, talented and generous therapists. I am so excited to be part of this wonderful team, and to learn more about music therapy as my time here continues - I can see already that this is a very special place.