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New document promotes Māori wellbeing

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3/03/2015
The creation of a new document ‘Kia purea ai koe – Māori Wellbeing in MidCentral DHB’, seeks to provide health and social sector staff with a greater understanding of the strengths, resources and qualities of Māori in the district.

​Developed by MidCentral DHB’s Clinical Network Programme, working with the Central PHO’s Māori Health Team, the document provides greater knowledge around Māori wellbeing. It is hoped that better informing health and social sector staff will result in a stronger appreciation of Māori and the Māori way of being, and have a flow-on effect of helping to address health equity concerns.

Chairman of Manawhenua Hauora, the Iwi consortium that works in partnership with MDHB, Richard Orzecki is glad to have this information released to the health and social sectors.

He said: “This type of information is very important to furthering the health of Māori in the MidCentral district. What ‘Kia purea ai koe’ will do is provide insights for health and social sector workers in our area, and help give them a better understanding of the Māori way of being.”

Central PHO’s Director of Māori Health Materoa Mar believes that it shines a more positive light on Māori health. 

She said: “Much of what we hear in relation to Māori health is often solely focused on a deficit and issues-based approach, and it is true that these challenges exist. However, it’s good to step back and take a look at what strengths and potential the Maori culture can provide to all. Research shows that a strong cultural foundation is a big part of wellbeing, and in this document we bring together information on how culture can be used to inform health.”

The information contained within the document isn’t necessarily new, but it is having it compiled in one place that makes it a great source for health and social sector workers. It covers diverse topics, including the history of Iwi in the district, culture, demographics, education and, of course, models of health for Māori.

MDHB Project Officer, Clinical Networks Katherine Gibbs was another who helped put the document together, and recognises the importance of having a consolidated source of information.

She said: “Working with our district groups that form the Clinical Network programme, it became apparent that a resource like this one would be invaluable. The information is out there, but bringing all the information together like this makes it easier for the hard-working people who form these groups to have a chance to learn more about Māori culture. We have also created a pre and post quiz so individuals and groups will be able to assess for themselves how much they have learned in reading the document.”

A read-only electronic copy of the document will be made available on the MDHB and Central PHO websites. For a hard copy call the Central PHO on (06) 354 9107.

Contact: Communications Unit (06) 350-8945

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