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Conference to tackle global issues

A global conference that will showcase “state-of-the-art” practice, research and theory in health promotion will be held in Rotorua from April 7 to 11 next year.

The 23rd International Union of Health Promotion and Education (IUHPE) World Conference on Health Promotion from April 7 to 11 will attract up to 2000 delegates from around the world and New Zealand.

The Health Promotion Forum of New Zealand (HPF) is co-hosting the event where for the first time at a global conference te reo Maori will be one of the official languages.

The conference has as its over-arching theme Waiora: Promoting Planetary Health and Sustainable Development for All and the 17 UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) as the framework.
Sione Tu’itahi the Executive Director of HPF says it is imperative if we are to address common global challenges such as the environment, economy, education, governance and leadership which determine our health and wellbeing that we engage on all levels, especially the international level.
The conference he says will provide future pathways for policy makers, health professionals and communities on how to address these challenges.
Mr Tu’itahi says climate change will be under the spotlight because the Pacific is where climate change is most evident.
“Eroding and sinking islands, sea level-rise because of global warming, tsunamis, cyclones, and people having to migrate from their homelands because of these disasters. Clearly, the environment is one of the major determinants of our health and wellbeing. So, our region must engage in finding solutions to these issues through health promotion and other professional fields.”
Indigenous knowledge on health promotion which is one of the underlying themes, of the conference can also offer solutions to today’s global challenges, says Mr Tu’itahi.
“New Zealand is a world leader in Indigenous knowledge and health promotion and indigenous knowledge systems are now being acknowledged as contributors of solutions to world problems. We can share our experience with the rest of the world, and we can learn from their experience too.”
He points out that not only can New Zealand health promotion contribute to addressing inequities and the wellbeing of the world, but we also have a lot to learn from colleagues around the world.

Trevor Simpson, HPF’s Deputy Executive Director/Senior Health Promotion Strategist (with Portfolio in Māori development) says “for the first time an indigenous plenary speaker will address the IUHPE World Conference in our indigenous language, Te Reo Māori”.

“This in turn will be simultaneously translated into the other three official languages of the conference. This presents a wonderful opportunity for Aotearoa, New Zealand to take a leading role in building indigenous notions of health promotion through promoting the use of indigenous language."

An impressive line-up of top speakers from around the world and New Zealand have been confirmed.

Earlybird registrations close on November 28.

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