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Te Pūtahitanga o Te Waipounamu congratulates

Te Pūtahitanga o Te Waipounamu congratulates New Year Honours recipients

Te Pūtahitanga o Te Waipounamu, the Whānau Ora Commissioning Agency for the South Island, congratulates all recipients of the New Year Honours 2017, for due acknowledgment of their outstanding commitment to communities across Aotearoa.

“We want to pay particular acknowledgment to social justice champion and whānau advocate, Mary Kamo, who is honoured with a Companion of the Order (CNZM) for over 33 years of dedicated service as a chaplain to Christchurch Women’s; Paparua Men’s and Rolleston Prisons” said Te Pūtahitanga Board Chair, Norm Dewes.

“When Mary Kamo took up her role in 1983 she was the first laywoman to become a chaplain to prisoners in New Zealand. She has applied relentless love, compassion and good sense in working with inmates and the whānau left on the outside. Mary has been a passionate supporter of restorative justice; seeking to create communication between offenders, victims and whānau. She is also a member of the Māori Women’s Welfare League, and with her husband kaumātua to Pillars Ka Pou Whakahou; an organisation that supports children with a parent in prison to access the right support”.

“In Te Tauihu, it was a delight to see rugby stalwart, Arthur Pacey awarded the Queen's Service Medal, or QSM, after a lifetime of service as a player, coach and administrator” said Mr Dewes. Mr Pacey has played for Waitohi Rugby Club and the Moutere Rugby Club, as well as Picton Rowing Club and Spring Creek School Committee. “For many of our whānau in Blenheim, while his contributions to rugby are exceptional, they are forever grateful for Arthur’s vision and leadership in maintaining the Otamawaho urupā burial ground, his contribution to Parerarua and the marae kitchen extension at Wairau Pa; all special sites for whānau”.

Contributions to whānau wellbeing can come from right across different sectors in Te Waipounamu, as Mr Dewes has recognised. “We acknowledge Ngaire Duke, QSM for her role in managing the Dunedin Citizen’s Advice Bureau, including working to establish clinics in Waikouaiti and Mosgiel.

“We thank John Harrington, who was awarded an Office of the Order (ONZM) for his leadership of over 35 years to youth work. John established Te Ora Hou in Papanui in 1983, which continues to this day to support youth development, including through two Whānau Ora Navigators.

“Congratulations also to Benesia Smith, MNZM, of Ngāti Kahungunu and Ngāti Porou whakapapa, who held senior leadership roles with the Canterbury Earthquake Recovery Authority (CERA) from establishment until its windup in 2016. In that role, Benesia worked closely with all partners, including Te Rūnanga o Ngāi Tahu”.

“We are also pleased to see recognition to George Ngatai, who was awarded a Queen’s Service Medal for working to advance Whānau Ora across Aotearoa, including more recently, a Whānau Ora community clinic in Christchurch”.

“Whānau across Te Waipounamu benefit from the dedication of community heroes who give so much of their lives to supporting a better future for those around them. We owe them all our deepest gratitude” said Mr Dewes.

© Scoop Media

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