Waatea News Update

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Location: Auckland, New Zealand

Monday, October 04, 2010

Cooperation key to Whanau Ora drive

A former Labour government minister says it will be up to Maori rather than the government to make Whanau Ora a success.

John Tamihere, the chief executive of west Auckland's Te Whanau o Waipareira Trust, says Maori providers will need to work together to find new ways of delivering health and social services.

He says there are high expectations in the Maori community about the new model.

“Whether it will deliver will depend not on Tariana Turia necessarily. Her job is to score resources to fire us on the street. The reality with the success of Whanau Ora is whether on the street we have leadership that is willing to cooperate and collaborate with one another,” Mr Tamihere says.

The government is expected to name its Whanua Ora providers this month.

LEADERS’ SILENCE ON CHILD ABUSE SLAMMED

A former Women's Refuge chief executive says tribal leaders aren't doing enough to address the disproportionately high numbers of Maori child abuse cases.

Merepeka Raukawa-Tait told a coronoer's inquest into the 2007 death of Nia Glassie that the Rotorua 3-year-old's whakapapa should have been her guarantee of safety and protection, but instead she was failed by her family and her tribe.

Mrs Raukawa-Tait says the coroner was keen to get input from Maori, but only she and one other fronted.

“There were a number of people that were asked, Maori leaders, people that deliver social services, in Rotorua, would they like to comment to the coroner around what we have learned and what we an do better. Apart from a person from the kohanga reo, not one other person came forward. That was very disappointing,” Mrs Raukawa Tait says.

TE PUKE HEALTH TRUST IN FRUIT FOR NUTS CAMPAIGN

Kiwifruit can help people overcome depression, and that's why a Maori mental health service in the kiwifruit capital of the world, Te Puke, is highlighting the hairy berry during Mental Health Awareness Week this week.

Isobel Whelan from the Poupoua Charitable Trust says its doors are open all week for people struggling with mental health and addiction issues.

On Thursday the trust will give away kiwifruit icecreams to all comers - and a giant-sized kiwifruit sundae who can recite the campaign's theme - flourishing for everybody, feel good and function well - and this year's whakatauki, “the sun arises with each new day, its rays beckon opportunity for all living things,” Ms Whelan says.

BANKS BEHIND IN MAORI OUTREACH SAYS BROWN

Manukau mayor and Auckland super city mayoral candidate Len Brown says he already has the sort of relationship that rival John Banks is promising to create after the election.

Mr Manks says he appoint a Maori policy advisor who will set up strong lines of communication with iwi.

Mr Brown is asking why Auckland city doesn't already have such a position, as Manukau has had for years.

He says the question of how both mana whenua and taura here groups should both be represented raises challenges,

Mr Brown says getting Maori policy advice right will a key issue for the new council.

GANGS WANTING HELP TO EXTEND ANTI-DRUG PROGRAMME

A Mongrel Mob leader wants iwi to stump up with cash for a programme that helps gang members overcome methamphetamine addiction.

Edge Te Whaiti says the Notorious chapter's partnership with the Salvation Army to run seven-week residential courses for P addicts and whanau members is delivering the message that the gang is prepared to change.

He says the aim is that members ditch the drug and start taking responsibilities for their families ... and that's something tribal leaders should get behind.

“Maybe some of the onus should lead back to iwi leaders rather than relying on government to come through on the day because they’ve drifted in how they support and how they deliver. Things could move faster and easier if we could get non-government organisations and iwi leaders behind it,” Mr Te Whaiti says.

Other gangs are starting to ask their leaders whether they could create similar drug treatment programmes.

REO BECOMES PART OF SPORTS AWARDS

Nominees for next month's Taranaki Maori Sports Awards are brushing up on their reo, just in case they win.

Leanne Matuku from the organising committee says since the Awards were resurrected 3 years ago, there is an expectation winners respond i roto i te reo maori.

She says it gives people a chance to acknowledge their connections to the rohe, and the te reo acceptance speeches have become an integral part of what is the highlight of the Taranaki Maori Sports Calender.

Ms Matuku says over the years more people have been able to stand up and give a mihi with their whakapapa.

Taranaki achievers Charlie McAlistair and his son Luke will be the speakers at the awards at the TSB Hub in Hawera on November 6.

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