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Minister pleased with Te Arawa Whanau Ora

Media Release
22 March 2013
Social Development Minister pleased with Te Arawa Whanau Ora

Minister for Social Development, Hon Paula Bennett visited Te Arawa Whanau Ora yesterday to discuss the White Paper for Vulnerable Children and the Children’s Action Plan. Hon Paula Bennett also expressed her appreciation of how well the Te Arawa Whanau Ora Collective was doing in working with whanau in the region.

Project Manager, Ngaroma Grant provided a presentation outlining the initiatives the Te Arawa Whanau Ora Collective has in place to assist tamariki (children), in particular working actively with Owhata Primary School and Lakes District Health Board to assist those whanau needing greater support.

The collective comprises nine Rotorua-based health and social service providers: Aroha Mai Cancer Support; Korowai Health Services; Te Ropu a Iwi o Te Arawa Charitable Trust; Te Kahui Hauora Trust; Te Papa Takaro o Te Arawa; Te Runanga o Ngati Pikiao; Te Utuhina Manaakitanga Trust; Te Waiariki Purea Trust; and Tipu Ora Charitable Trust.

It was announced last year that Rotorua would be the first community in the country to trial the Children's Team initiative, which sees support given to children and their families by trained support workers helping develop individualised plans for each child, making sure the plan stays on track and importantly that the child and their whanau access the services they need.

"Te Arawa Whanau Ora Collective have really ‘got it’. They are leading the way in supporting and empowering whanau and families and actually, this is just about Wellington and Government catching up with the community”, said Mrs Bennett.

Te Arawa Whanau Ora paearahi (navigator) Sunny Teki-Petley highlighted the key to the Collective's success was in actively communicating and working together in a meaningful way, allowing a much higher level of integrated support for the whanau they seek to empower.

A similar story was shared of Pacific Island families accessing Te Arawa Whanau Ora services and as a result have been thriving in the area of whanau well being, housing and employment.

Both the Te Arawa Whanau Ora Collective and Minister Bennett agreed that the goal was to have happy healthy children living with their families.

At the hui yesterday, Mrs Bennett stressed that the Children's Action Plan was not a one size fits all approach, rather that each region would shape and mould the programme to its own unique needs and frameworks.

ENDS

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