Mana Tane Ora Conference
A desire among Māori men to better manage their own health and personal development needs continues to be the focus of the 2nd National Māori Men’s Health Conference being hosted by Mana Tāne Ora o Aotearoa, in Blenheim from 5-7 December.
The overarching theme of this year’s conference is Tāne Ora – Whānau Ora and will examine how Tāne Ora can be supported by and contribute to Whānau Ora. The health of Māori men is inextricably linked to the wellbeing of whānau. Ultimately the expected outcome is a vast improvement in health and wellbeing of Māori Men contributing to better Whānau Ora outcomes.
Since the establishment of Mana Tāne Ora o Aotearoa in 2009 there has been a continued interest locally, regionally and nationally of Māori men in wanting to become part of the solution in addressing many of the social, economic and health challenges facing Māori men today.
Conference Chair, Joe Puketapu says “This conference is designed to provide opportunities to discuss priorities and issues for Māori men, and to be challenged to expand our thinking of how we can work towards achieving Tāne Ora within the context of Whānau Ora”.
“Providing better access to information, to participate in forums and contributing to the development of initiatives designed specifically for Māori males are seen as a means to encouraging positive change among Māori men” says Joe.
The Tāne Ora Conference will also explore roles and responsibilities of tāne within whānau, while looking at the cultural construction of Māori masculinity and examining how services can work to achieve Tāne Ora within the context of Whānau Ora.
Keynote speakers include Professor, Sir Mason Durie, Dr Clive Aspin, Dr Rawiri Jansen, and Dr George Gray who will bring both a clinical and cultural overview to Māori Men’s Health.
In addition to these speakers, iwi representatives and prominent Māori commentators including Chris Winitana, Wayne Shelford, Zane Scarborough, Chef Eru Tutaki, Leon MacDonald and Māori Members of Parliament, Te Ururoa Flavell and Hone Harawira will also present to the conference.
A key aim of Tāne Ora is to raise the awareness of health and social issues impacting on Māori men’s health, and to encourage Māori males to contribute to the development of policies and initiatives that may improve their health status.
“This year, the Mana Tāne Ora conference welcomes a delegation of rangatahi from around the country to participate in a rangatahi stream being run congruently to the main conference. They are our hope and our future and unfortunately many of the issues we face currently will be left for them to resolve in the future” says Joe
The Mana Tāne Ora conference starts in Blenheim 1pm tomorrow and provides a forum for Māori males to come together and share their experiences and aspirations, and draw strength from each other and to discuss the role of the National Māori Men’s Health Coalition.
The conference committee agrees that Tāne Ora will not only have a positive impact for Māori men and their whānau but potentially, their hapū and iwi.