In 2010 Deborah mentored new writer, Louise Inglis on the First Chapters programme, Nga Wahanga Tuatahi, held in Manukau and Papakura. Louise came to the course with the intention of acquiring the skills to help her write a book about her experience as a mother nurturing a child with Autism, profound intellectual disability and Epilepsy. She wanted to write about the first seven years of her son Kevin’s life and the overwhelming challenges facing her family as they grappled with the initial shock and grief and with the endless questions: ‘How do we maintain family life while doing the very best for Kevin?’ What does this mean for our other son? What of my marriage? My career? Can we recover a semblance of normality? What is normality?’
"This is such a worthwhile course where emotional safety and student growth in writing are paramount."
– Marilyn Woolford