About Us

Our Vision

Connecting Mind and Body with Science and Expertise

D’Connect is a New Zealand team of health and wellbeing professionals, clinicians, experts, and just your usual individuals who would like to live a long and healthy life.

We focus on education and sharing health-related information based on research and experience to provide a fact-based and holistic approach to health.

Today, getting healthy and staying healthy is almost a full-time job, and the convenience of modern living is actually making things harder. Yes, our lifespan has increased, but our “years without a disease” or healthspan is declining.

Currently, a person living in a modern society has a healthspan of 60 years. Considering the effects of the recent health pandemic, this is now most likely even lower.

Our Mission

Instead of treating diseases, let’s try preventing them by sharing important knowledge and educating people. That is our mission.

Through sharing health and wellbeing information, our goal is to educate and, for those who need it, provide guidance towards a healthier and more enriched life.

Knowledge is only the first step in this journey, and to be successful at it, we have to apply it in our daily healthy habits, which is where our community makes a difference and makes it easier to follow through.

For us to optimise our health and live as long as possible, we all need to come together, share and connect as one team, and most importantly, we need to ensure that our future generations grow up healthy, resilient and well-informed.

Our Team

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Alexandar Filkovich

CHIEF IDEA OFFICER

Alexandar has completed his Master of Engineering studies, followed by a Postgraduate Degree in Business and Administration, when he arrived to an understanding that his actual interest is in health and wellbeing.

For nearly 20 years, most of my focus, when not working on my career, was to learn new skills and knowledge that would allow me to become more efficient and productive, while staying healthy, so I could work continuously.

Because of this tunnel vision, it took me a while to realize that I was only investing in my health so that I could work for extensive periods of time. Instead, I should have been focusing on my health for the sake of being healthy.

During this period of time it was a challenge to find good and reliable content on health and wellbeing topics. Today there is too much content, and a lot is inaccurate or outdated. But how do we know which one is which?

This is one of the main goals behind D’Connect, and that is to offer current and well-researched information that everyone can understand and use to improve their health, because what is life without health?

Living is much more than a sum of quick tips on “how to”, and I believe that we can all benefit greatly by learning more about ourselves.

With D’Connect, adding new knowledge and positive habits that can improve our health, wellbeing and quality of life will become easy, fulfilling and joyful.

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Vicky Wild

EDITORIAL TEAM

Vicky has a Bachelor of Science degree in Physical Education and Sports Science from Loughborough University, U.K. She now works in Auckland as a full-time professional tennis coach, alongside freelance editing and proofreading. She has a Specialist Award in Editing and Proofreading from Learning Cloud NZ and a Distinction qualification from the Proofreading Academy, U.K.

I have always had an interest in health and wellbeing, as it is so crucial to the sporting performance. All aspects of sport can be influenced – mental, physical, physiological, and emotional. This also extends to daily life, but often we want to help ourselves and don’t know where to start.

D’Connect allows for a wide cross-section of people to learn and educate themselves. The crucial thing for me is that D’Connect has no agenda; it is a neutral educational tool, here to benefit us all.

In my role with D’Connect, I hope to help present the content clearly and effectively. Our information should engage our readers and encourage them to do further research. Consequently, I hope they feel they have the autonomy to make informed decisions to help their own wellbeing.

I believe the value of a team is that we can all learn from each other, and I am certainly excited to learn from the experts in this field!

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Lynley Irvine

EDITORIAL TEAM

Lynley has completed a study course of Proofreading and Editing Diploma in 2019 with New Zealand Business Studies. She also has many years experience in administration, proofreading, editing and document presentation.

D’Connect is a platform that has reliable and well sourced information in regards to health and wellbeing. A great health education arena for those wanting to understand different health topics and to be able to actually understand what is being shared.

Being part of a team like this that is focused on educating people on different health topics encourages myself in my journey of my wellbeing. I also enjoy seeing articles and content that is well written and presented.

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Beverly Clunies-Ross

Editorial Team

Beverly is a seasoned communications professional with a Bachelor of Communication Studies, a Masters in Information Studies, and is currently pursuing a Postgraduate Diploma in Science Communication. Specialising in delivering comprehensive editing services, Beverly is committed to ensuring that content is not only accessible but also well-crafted and reliable, empowering individuals to make informed decisions.

Beverly’s academic and professional journey has highlighted the critical importance of clear and dependable information, particularly in the realm of health and well-being.

As a member of the D’Connect team, I wholeheartedly embrace my role in assisting the delivery of meticulously crafted content. D’Connect provides a crucial platform for people to learn and connect with resources about health and well-being. The resources are both informative and engaging and most importantly reliable.

I find immense value in teamwork and the opportunity to learn from the seasoned experts in this field. I’m dedicated to playing a role in ensuring that D’Connect remains a trusted source of information, offering invaluable guidance for those seeking to make positive choices regarding their nutrition and well-being.

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Helmut Berié

Community Outreach Specialist

Helmut holds a Master’s Degree in Systems Science from Louisiana State University in Baton Rouge and brings a wealth of experience from his 30-year tenure in the software industry, with a focused decade-plus in web development. His journey includes a role as Software Product Manager for a SaaS-based eCommerce product discovery platform, where he delved deep into SEO. Currently, Helmut is leading the SEO function for a digital asset marketplace based in Melbourne, applying his prowess in eCommerce, Enterprise SEO, and Technical SEO, along with substantial experience in International, Content, and Mobile SEO.

As a staunch advocate for health and wellness, I firmly believe in the potential of platforms like D’Connect to educate the public in embracing healthier lifestyles. With countries like New Zealand amidst a health crisis, struggling to cater to an aging and increasingly unwell population, I recognise the urgent need for educational health platforms.

The success of platforms like D’Connect in encouraging individuals to proactively manage their health and well-being will inevitably lead to a healthier community at large.

I’m optimistic about significantly expanding D’Connect’s reach by zeroing in on health topics that resonate with the public. Through the strategic and ethical application of SEO, I aim to enhance the content, driving meaningful and organic traffic growth substantially.

When the opportunity arose to volunteer my time, I was eager to contribute. I’m committed to the dissemination of high-quality health information that empowers individuals to lead not only healthier, but also happier and longer lives.

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Irene Joy Chua

Digital Marketing & Strategy

Irene has 15 years of experience in Digital Advertising and marketing. Currently, as a single mum, she is juggling a career in Digital Advertising and working as an in-house Digital practitioner in the healthcare industry.

These days, being healthy is much more than just being physically healthy, since mental and emotional health are equally important, and at times even more relevant.

I always believed that we can only help people who help themselves, and I feel that it’s the same with our overall health. The more we know, the better we will be at maintaining our health, and preventing or delaying diseases.

As a working single mum, time is the biggest resource, and I have to manage it carefully. Therefore, getting reliable information fast is very important to me, which is where I see D’Connect being exceedingly valuable as a trustworthy source of information on health and wellbeing.

I feel very strongly about mental health and building resilience, and while being a part of D’Connect, I see myself also sharing my journey and challenges, that offered me the opportunity to grow, learn and develop.

As an independent platform, D’Connect’s value as a source of information on health and wellbeing will be crucial for us Kiwis, but also for people around the world who are looking for unadulterated facts and data.

Being a part of such a team, that is built on moral principles, hard-work and expertise, makes it a very rewarding and humbling experience for me.

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Amanda Slater-Hayes

WEB DEVELOPMENT

Amanda holds a Diploma of Web Development from the Yoobee College of Creative Innovation (formerly Natcoll) in Wellington. She has over ten years of experience in building and maintaining websites, and enjoys both the creative and problem-solving aspects of the field. She loves that there is always something new to learn in web development.

Much of life is about educating yourself and problem-solving to improve the quality of your life, both mentally and physically. Good health is often not thought about until we get unwell or sick.

D’Connect serves as a reminder that we need to be proactive when it comes to our health and wellbeing, and it does that by providing Kiwis with trusted content so we can make good, informed decisions.

I find the content on D’Connect fascinating and inspiring; fascinating because there is so much to learn about the human body, and inspiring because you learn that there are different ways of supporting your health. This means that everyone can find their own path to health that works best for them and their situation.

My goal with D’Connect is to showcase high-quality health content by providing an easy-to-access online platform that is well-presented and a joy to use.

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Lia Antonets

UX UI DESIGN

Lia has graduated from Auckland University of Technology with a Bachelor’s degree in Interaction Design.

From the start of my career I have wanted to focus on creating a real difference which is one of the reasons why today I am part of D’Connect.

Being a part of the team allows me to learn from a different number of health professionals and experts, who understand that though health is universal, all of us are different in some way which means that we should have a unique approach to our health.

Today, finding and accessing this information, and making sure it’s trustworthy, is not an easy task. D’Connect changed this, and it’s great that we now have everything in one place.

I hope and look forward to implementing new learnings in my own life as well as making a positive impact on the lives of others because everything starts by having a good foundation, and that foundation is our health.

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Carly Hanna

NUTRITION & DIETETICS

Carly has completed a Bachelor of Science, majoring in Human Nutrition and Psychology, and is on her way to attain a Master’s in Health Psychology. Also, she is a certified Youthline Helpline Counselor.

One of my goals is to become a psychologist with a focus on a holistic approach to health given my interest in various mental health disorders, trauma’s effect on health, plant-based diets, and the relationship between food and mood.

These are all complex topics that should be made more comprehensible so people can understand them and make informed decisions for their health and wellbeing. This is exactly what D’Connect does.

D’Connect is a platform that provides access to reliable, evidence-based and well-resourced information from experts in the field.

I believe that D’Connect can provide up-to-date information on research and clinical applications for multiple areas across all domains of health, which is why I joined, in the hope of applying my university education to a platform that will reach the general public in a modern, digestible way.

I’m on a journey to be healthier, more mindful and more self-assured in all areas of my life, and with a team of like-minded people, I know that we can make a difference in mental health and nutrition in our community.

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Tiana Hape-Cramond

NUTRITION & DIETETICS

Tiana is a Bachelor of Science, majoring in Human Nutrition, and is in the final stages of her Master’s of Applied Science in Advanced Nutrition Practice. Tiana is also an Associate Registered Nutritionist, and her goal is to promote positive lifestyle behaviours through public health and education.

Upon completing my studies, I took a personal interest in healthy heart nutrition. Prevention of non-communicable diseases, such as cardiovascular disease, obesity and diabetes, may soon become one of our priorities, and we have to take a more active role because knowledge saves lives.

I see D’Connect as an education platform where people can easily access evidence-based articles written in a way that can be understood by everyone, irrespective of their age or level of education.

Having such a platform with high-quality content presented in a relatable way can be used as an education and public health intervention mechanism to lower the prevalence of non-communicable diseases in low socio-economic households.

Nutrition habits are developed at home and at an early age. We must try and get them right from the start.

In my personal time, the team at D’Connect assists me to pursue a good routine, and I’m motivated to further my education by exploring sustainable dietary practices and ways to improve food security.

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Bernadeth Atrinindarti

NUTRITION & DIETETICS

Bernadeth has completed a Bachelor of Science, majoring in Human Nutrition, and obtained a Master’s in Advanced Nutrition Practice. Her interests are sports and performance nutrition, and the varieties of diets around the world to better understand their nutritional value.

Health and wellbeing is a major topic nowadays, which is why reliable and science-based resources are important.

As a nutritionist, my goal is to encourage a healthy balanced diet and share the evidence-based knowledge for people to live healthier and longer lives. To achieve this, we have to have proper platforms and mediums, such as D’Connect.

D’Connect supports people to achieve their health goals and increase their knowledge of health and wellbeing. Cooking, nutrition and the importance of functional foods are only a piece of the puzzle on how to be healthy. D’Connect covers these topics, and so much more.

For the last six years, my focus was learning specifically about nutrition, and now being a part of D’Connect made me realize that there are still many things I need to learn about nutrition and wellbeing.

Though D’Connect is a place for me to share my experience and knowledge, it’s also a community that helps me to grow as a person and a professional.

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Kate McCullough

NATURAL MEDICINE

Kate is currently finishing a Bachelor’s in Ayurveda from the Maharishi International University. Her passion for holistic and alternative health modalities started when she was 18 and already experiencing an array of health issues that the doctors had no answers for. This led Kate down the path of studying the ancient knowledge of Ayurveda.

Today my focus is on the gut, mental health, and sleep and exercise. Through pulse readings, diet, daily routines, yoga and meditation, I manage to keep my body and mind in balance.

It took me a while to learn how to heal myself, which is why it’s important to share personal experiences. To me, D’Connect achieves exactly that; it’s a platform to connect, learn and grow together.

There is plenty of information on the internet regarding health and wellbeing, but not much coming from New Zealand. D’Connect is changing this by providing a platform for Kiwi practitioners and therapists to come together and share their wealth of knowledge.

D’Connect isn’t telling people what is right or wrong, which is why I joined – to share knowledge and experience, and encourage people to form their own decisions on what will best support them on their unique health journey.

The platform also allows me to learn more about other health topics, on top of Ayurveda, by reading great content written by the rest of our amazing team.

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Ana Cubillana

CREATIVE & ILLUSTRATION

Ana has completed a Bachelor of Fine Arts majoring in Sculpture although she now spends more time painting and drawing as a means of closely observing and feeling the world. Ana is also a Graphic Designer which to her is a different creative language. She enjoys the combination of both; the subjective and objective as each expression informs the other.

I’ve always been a keen gardener and have grown my own food organically with respect to other living organisms in the soil and environment. I believe in giving the body the right information. With good healthy habits and activities the body can thrive, heal and will give back a positive experience of life.

D’Connect’s ethos is to educate and promote health and wellbeing, prevent diseases and prolong life by sharing research-based information from reliable and relevant resources in a way that is accessible and readable to everyone. I’m a part of this great initiative as a way of helping and making a difference in the community, and also to gain more knowledge and educate myself and my closest ones.

I hope that we shall all choose wellbeing as a way of life.

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Elspeth Alix Batt

CREATIVE & ILLUSTRATION

Elspeth has degrees in Fashion Design and Graphic Design, and has worked as an illustrator for over thirty years, mainly in publishing for children. She is also a botanical artist and landscape painter.

I wish that a platform like D’Connect had been around when I was diagnosed in my thirties with serious autoimmune disease and I was looking for reliable, unbiased and factual information on natural health solutions to use in conjunction with the conventional medication I was prescribed.

I believe that D’Connect and the information it offers will be an invaluable resource for those wishing to treat and improve their health and longevity in a holistic way.

I hope that my illustrations will contribute to the knowledge and understanding of the various topics and that in the process I will learn more in order to help me on my own health journey.

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Lesi Kong

CREATIVE & ILLUSTRATION

With over five years of experience in the world of design, Lesi has mastered the art of turning ideas into visual realities. Lesi holds a Bachelor of Multi-Media from Wellington Institute of Technology (Weltec) and has collaborated with businesses in different fields.

I noticed that due to busy life and work, more and more people are experiencing a negative impact on their mental and emotional health, as well as well-being, which has made me think about my own health and routines. This is where D’Connect has made a difference.

As a part of the creative team, I’m passionate about creating a wide range of designs for readers, and make potentially complex topics easier to understand. At the same time, I can learn more about different health-related subjects, and hopefully, can incorporate them into my lifestyle.

I believe that D’Connect is a potent digital tool and platform that New Zealand needs.

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Rebecca Bradley

Photographer

Rebecca has completed a Bachelor of Communications, and has focused for most of her career on marketing and client management, before deciding that photography is where her true passion lies. Today, Rebecca predominantly does wedding and commercial photography.

My interest in holistic health began during the time I had a stressful corporate job and was desperate to look after my own mental and physical health. Soon, I learned how difficult it was to find accurate and reliable information.

To me D’connect is a much needed platform that can help educate people by providing them the information and tools that have the power to change their lives.

As part of the team, my focus is on creating and capturing meaningful imagery that goes alongside information that will help people become the best versions of themselves.

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Linda Dean

VOICE ARTIST

Linda is a professional Voice Artist who has trained with Gravy for the Brain, NZ Voice Academy and Toby Ricketts.

I was diagnosed with Juvenile Chronic Arthritis at the age of 11, which has now turned to Rheumatoid Arthritis and Osteoarthritis. This resulted in an ankle replacement and I’m now awaiting a knee replacement. All of this has made me conscious of health, foods and exercise.

Trying to research and read about these topics, and many others that we come across along the way, is very time consuming and often tedious. It has taken me years to build the knowledge that I now have. Then, upon experiencing D’Connect, I realised how little information I was actually armed with.

D’Connect, while having a lot of information, is easy to navigate with everything in one place. Having a health and wellbeing platform that has so many health professionals sharing their expertise, made me rethink that pharmaceuticals are the answer for everything, and I’m now looking to include a more natural approach to health and living.

I’m now on a mission to come off all pharmaceuticals relating to my arthritis, and I am determined to better my education around food, exercise, mindset and all other areas of my life. This is where I’m relying on D’Connect to make this a successful journey.

Things can only get better and better from here. Onwards and upwards to peak health.

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Jason Moon

Video Editor

Jason has a background in multimedia and communications and 20 years in web production and broadcast. Currently based in Bali, Jason loves the power of photos, videos, and sound to create emotion, connection, and joy. He is currently creating visual content for yoga teachers, studios and healers, who are on a path of learning and growing their genius to positively impact hundreds of people along the way.

There is nothing more satisfying than seeing my clients’ faces when they see their photos and video for the first time.

I got into yoga and wellness while living in Auckland and after tearing a hamstring in a triathlon, I felt I needed something that I haven’t done before in order to strengthen my core. The benefits of being flexible wasn’t the only realisation of my discovery of yoga, and I soon started focusing on breath and movement, which provided a larger platform to explore wellness.

A big part of moving to Bali was the growing yoga scene. Today, it’s a vibrant community where modalities like dance and singing are used every day to ground, heal and vibrate our lives.

This is why I decided to become a part of the multipotent D’Connect team so more people can learn about different health modalities and ideas that are now becoming more talked about.

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Lydia Dolbel

VIDEO EDITOR & SOCIAL MEDIA MARKETING

Lydia has a diploma in VFX & Motion Graphics and a background in digital design. Currently, she is finishing up her studies in social media marketing, and will be adding that knowledge to a decade of video production and content creation experience.

My passion for holistic wellness comes from discovering firsthand how beneficial natural approach to food and living can be to help us feel and be at our best. I believe that true vitality is something that is achieved by nurturing our entire body, mind and spirit.

A big part of my personal healing journey was the GAPS diet, which is a nutritional protocol that can help with many health conditions including autism, food allergies and auto-immune diseases. However, it wasn’t always easy to find accurate and up-to-date information.

Luckily, with D’Connect we now have experts and practitioners sharing that knowledge and expertise, which is enabling many to take control of their health.

I believe that D’Connect can revolutionise the way people think about health in New Zealand, because prevention, and being informed on time, is the key. To make this change, we must all come together because “When ‘I’ is replaced with ‘we’ even illness becomes wellness.” – Malcom X

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Elizabeth Castillo

CONTENT PLANNING

Elizabeth Castillo has completed a Bachelor of Arts, majoring in Communication. Over the last few years, due to certain challenges many around the world were facing, she became more interested in mental health, active lifestyle and how to reduce stress.

Health is fundamental to having a happy and productive life, and I believe that everyone’s goal is to attain that work-life balance we often talk about. However, this can be challenging, as well as finding trustworthy sources of relatable and well-timed information.

This is where D’Connect makes a difference.

To me, D’Connect is an educational platform that everyone can benefit from, and easily access, and can assist people on their journey of becoming healthier.

As a part of the team, I have the pleasure to learn about other people’s experiences, expertise, challenges and wins, and by sharing these experiences everyone can benefit from. Also, the more we know, the less difficult our future struggles will become.

I see D’Connect becoming everyone’s “let me check something” platform when making decisions on all things health and wellbeing related, and as it grows and develops, I see myself learning, growing and developing as well.

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Nathalia Zanelatto

CONTENT PLANNING

Nathalia holds a Bachelor’s degree in Language Studies & Literature and has dedicated many years to teaching and working with special needs students. Today, Nathalia is a UX/UI designer and front-end developer focused on creating interfaces that provide equity-oriented experiences to users. Currently, Nathalia is working towards completing her studies in Information Systems and Digital Product Management to broaden her understanding of all aspects and stages of a digital product lifecycle.

My mission lies in designing and creating technology that meets people’s needs and enhances information accessibility. However, with the rapid advancements in technology, we now face an overwhelming amount of information, which makes finding reliable content challenging.

Fortunately, we have D’Connect. D’Connect serves as a reliable source for research articles on health and well-being. What sets it apart is its user-friendly platform that takes into consideration the varying levels of technical knowledge among readers, ensuring that the information is accessible to all.

As a technology professional, I spend long periods of time indoors, which doesn’t contribute to a healthy lifestyle. Since I joined D’Connect, I’ve felt the need to reassess my priorities and adopt healthier habits, which will be much easier with D’Connect as my guide.

D’Connect is looking to become New Zealand’s favourite digital platform for health and well-being, and being a part of a team that strives to improve people’s lives is a significant motivation for me.