The Government is progressing its work on supporting families and children with today’s Rotorua launch of “Tiaki Whānau”, a pilot programme which will provide better support for young parents who most need extra help.
“The Government allocated $10 million as part of Budget 2019 Mental Wellbeing Package for three pilots to provide enhanced support for young parents and their whānau. Tiaki Whanau, in Lakes DHB area, the first of these pilots, takes a whānau-centred approach to help young parents and their families for the first three years of caring for their babies,” Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern said.
“A whānau-centred approach to supporting young parents is vital to improving outcomes. Supporting young parents is an area that we have to get right, and it’s a priority for this Government, and for me.
“Tiaki Whānau will support each whānau with a kaitiaki (key worker) who may be a Well Child Tamariki Ora nurse, kaiawhina or social worker, supported by a multidisciplinary team, who will ensure young parents and their whānau get the additional support they need for three years, starting early in pregnancy.
“This support is to help young parents and their whānau in this life changing event. This can include health care, mental health support, help to access social services, housing or education, or helping whānau learn more about parenting and child development. Most importantly, it provides continuity of care based on whakawhanaungatanga, which means building and fostering meaningful relationships.
“If young people get the support they need in their role as parents, this leads to better outcomes for their children, and the wider community.
“The pilots are based on a trial carried out in Hawkes Bay in 2011, which resulted in improved health outcomes for young mothers and their families,” Health Minister Andrew Little said.
“It was clear that this approach could have positive outcomes for young parents around the country.
“Lakes DHB was one of three sites chosen for the pilots, which have high proportions of young parents, Māori and Pacific whānau, and whānau who live with high socioeconomic needs.
“The Ministry of Health has provided funding for Lakes DHB to engage Well Child Tamariki Ora service provider Manaaki Ora Tipu Ora, to deliver culturally appropriate, whānau-based care for up to 40 whānau in this area,” Andrew Little said.
“These pilots will be a major step towards addressing health and social inequalities for children and whānau of young parents,” Associate Minister of Health Dr Ayesha Verrall said.
“I have the upmost confidence in the model of care that Manaaki Ora Tipu Ora are delivering. This is a model which values a kaupapa Māori approach to health and wellbeing and utilises the diverse skill and experience of the Well Child Tamariki Ora workforce.
“Two other pilots are planned in Counties Manukau DHB and Hauora Tairāwhiti and are expected to get under way in early 2021.
“The outcomes of the pilots will be evaluated and will inform future transformation of the Well Child Tamariki Ora programme,” Dr Ayesha Verrall said.