Moerewa : Northland
Whānau and Iwi of Moerewa have recognised the importance of Te Ao Māori approaches as a pathway to improve mental health and reduce suicidal intentions in their community.
As a result, the marae-based initiative, Waipuna Ora has been established to run wānanga with whānau and hapū in the Moerewa community. These wānanga utilise positive strategies such as waiata, wānanga, raranga and physical activity, to reconnect to whenua & Te Ao Māori. These activities also connect the participants to whakapapa, local knowledge, the whenua and to tupuna. The promotion of these important aspects of hapu & iwi knowledge encourage the learning of new knowledge, skills and whānau connections and strengthen resilience amongst the community.
One key aim of Waipuna Ora is to enable participants to address life’s issues, especially those things that may increase the risk of mental distress and/or suicide risk and encouraging a greater awareness of how to work on and maintain hauora. So, participants learn to identify and address mental distress and the risks of substance use contributing to various factors, including the negative impact it can have on suicide risk.
The empowering aspect of these wānanga are designed to enhance the quality of life by embracing identity and aligning as whānau.
*This whānau initiative is proudly supported by Te Au (and Te Rau Ora) through the Māori Suicide Prevention Fund (2020-2021).