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Christchurch to host Whānau Ora symposium 2017

Christchurch to host Whānau Ora symposium 2017

This week, 18 groups from around the South Island will converge on a Christchurch marae for an event celebrating Māori success.

The annual symposium for Te Pūtahitanga o te Waipounamu will run over three days at Ngā Hau e Wha Marae in Aranui from 21-23 June. Te Pūtahitanga o Te Waipounamu is the agency the government tasks with commissioning Whānau Ora funding across the South Island. It has grown leaps and bounds since its establishment in July 2014 and staff will host more than 150 guests in Aranui to mark three years of progress.

The 18 whānau groups gearing up to attend the symposium will feature as showcase initiatives which have received funding from Te Pūtahitanga over the past year.

More than 122 distinctive whānau entities and initiatives have been supported by Te Pūtahitanga investment. They include mobilising whānau to be proactive with their physical and mental wellbeing (Hale Compound Conditioning, Christchurch), addressing family violence (Tu Pono: Te Mana Kaha o Te Whānau, South Island wide), land based initiatives such as bee husbandry and reconnection to ancestral land blocks (Kaikaiawaro Charitable Trust, Blenheim), supporting young people to develop leadership (Tuia Te Tai Poutini, West Coast) or enabling people with disabilities to achieve independence in their lives (Koha Kai, Invercargill).

Te Pūtahitanga pouarahi/chief executive Helen Leahy says the symposium is an opportunity for the groups to celebrate their successes, as well as learn from other funded initiatives.

“In commissioning Whānau Ora we do not provide a particular service or programme; we are stewards of an approach which seeks to empower whānau to identify and meet their own needs. The approach is premised upon building whānau capability to independently address and manage their own lives, in a word, to be ‘self-determining’.

“Not only does commissioning allow for a more direct relationship with whānau, it also places whānau at the centre of their own pathways towards prosperity”.

The event will also feature high-calibre keynote speakers, including Minister for Whānau Ora, Honourable Te Ururoa Flavell, the emerging advocate for youth in care Tupua Urlich and a whānau-inspired presentation involving Sir Tipene O’Regan and his daughter, Hana.


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