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Opening of Te Waiora Community Health Service, Foxton

5 July 2014

Opening of Te Waiora Community Health Service, Foxton

E ngā kanohi o Ngāti Raukawa i konei i tēnei rā, tēnā koutou katoa.

He mihi nui rawa atu ki a koutou kua tae mai nei ki te whakanui i te kaupapa o te rā nei. Tēnā koutou.

Your Honour the Mayor and Councillors of the Horowhenua District Council.
The Chair and Chief Executive of Mid Central District Health Board.
The Chair and General Manager of Te Rūnanga o Raukawa.
The executive leadership of the bCentral Primary Health Organisation
The fabulous project sponsors of Te Waiora – Materoa Mar and Ana Winiata.
And my colleague, Hon Nathan Guy.

I want to thank Tawhiti Kunaiti – the Māori Health Manager of Central PHO and Project Manager for Te Waiora – for your invitation to join with you on such a special milestone day.

I want to also mihi to Foxton Medical Trust chairman, Neville Gimblett, for your leadership and drive in overseeing the transformation of your health services.

I have to say, I was struck by a headline featured in the local news the other day – ‘Health centre - a twenty year dream come true.’

I have to take exception to the byline – not because this centre is not the stuff of dreams – because it is quite clear to all here that Te Waiora Health Medical Centre is a fabulous purpose-built facility for Foxton and your surrounding community to treasure for years to come.

My objection instead is to the perception that a dream just appears like magic – out of thin air.

The reality of course is quite the contrary. This dream has taken sweat, determination and hard work.

That is exactly what the Foxton community has been doing for the last two decades to build a medical centre for all of your families to benefit from.

Today then is our chance to say congratulations to the cast of champions who have invested so much time and money to get this project off the ground.

Every great dream begins with a dreamer. In the case of Foxton there’s a few!

Special mention should be made of your local business owner, Larry Ellison, of Te Awahou Holdings who has been supported by the Horowhenua District Council and the Foxton Area Community Medical Trust, in providing a building for Te Waiora in the first place.

In January 2013 the Central PHO purchased the Foxton Medical Service from Dr Nagoor. Central PHO already owned the Foxton Family Health Centre practice, which was the only other general practice in Foxton. These two practices have combined to create Te Waiora.

Ngāti Raukawa – in naming the centre, Te Waiora – wanted to create the optimum environment for health and wellbeing by the concept of the water of life.

I want to acknowledge the Kere Kere Healthy Communities Trust which has been actively driving the development. For over ten years this network has been meeting monthly at the Foxton Beach Community Centre. The extent of your vision - your long term view – is awe-inspiring. You have well and truly put the work in – today it is time to celebrate a longer term view of health that all of you have shaped.

Te Waiora is a true model for partnership – partnership with the community, with the Central Primary Health Organisation and with Te Rūnanga o Raukawa.

There is another very important by-line that I wanted to draw to your attention – and that is in the logo for Te Waiora Integrated Community Health Service. It comes in four words – Your Community Health Service.

That orientation – that this service is truly yours – is a feature of Te Waiora which has come about from the collaboration exercised by these two entities.

Both partners have worked over the past six months to create a equitable and effective relationship in all aspects of the planning and development of health, social and other services to the Foxton, Shannon and surrounding communities.

That relationship was consolidated in a partnership agreement signed at Whare Manaaki, here in Foxton, on the 21st June.

I have been told there has been strong local hapū and community engagement in the process of developing the partnership. It goes without saying that the continued involvement of all these parties will be critical in your success.

If this centre is really to be your centre – it needs to actively encourage feedback as to how well it is meeting your needs.

Te Waiora – the water of life - is well positioned to look after and anticipate the future of all your upcoming generations.

And the reason I can say that so confidently is because I know your hub of health is based on ten kaupapa tuku iho which will stand you in good stead for the generations and decades to follow.

The inherited values that will be woven through every aspect of your approach to health take us on a wonderful journey of discovery - a voyage of exploration which provides us with the strongest foundation for our wellbeing - for Whānau Ora.

I want to commend this community for your strength, your foresight and the passion you have invested in your own solutions.

It is indeed an honour and a source of great personal inspiration to me to see the legacy of love that Ngāti Raukawa, Matua Whatarangi and your hapū continue to demonstrate in so many wonderful ways across our rohe.

Thank you for making sure this Matariki is indeed a time of great magic and meaning - as this special community comes together to create your future.

ENDS

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