Whakapapa of Whānau Ora policy

Whānau potential is high and ready to be unleashed; Whānau Ora provider networks are extensive, committed, innovative and ready to learn from each other; and Whānau Ora is already anchored on solid foundations that will bring fresh opportunities and gains for whānau in the decade ahead.

PROFESSOR SIR MASON DURIE – Whānau Ora Governance Group Chair

The Whānau Ora approach is unique because it:

  • Recognises a collective entity,
  • Endorses a group capacity for self-determination,
  • Has an inter-generational dynamic,
  • Is built on a Māori cultural foundation,
  • Asserts a positive role for whānau within society and can be applied across a wide range of social and economic sectors.

Whānau Ora is an inclusive approach to providing services and opportunities to all families in need across New Zealand. It empowers whānau as a whole – rather than focusing separately on individual family members and their problems – and requires multiple government agencies to work together with families rather than separately with individual relatives.

Jointly implemented by Government, Whānau Ora Commissioning Agencies and whānau, Whānau Ora is about a transformation of whānau – with whānau who set their own direction. We drive a focus on improving outcomes: that whānau will be self-managing; living healthy lifestyles; participating fully in society; confidently participating in te ao Māori; economically secure and successfully involved in wealth creation; and cohesive, resilient and nurturing.

Whānau Ora works in a range of ways, influenced by the approach the whānau choose to take. Some whānau will want to come up with ways of improving their own lives and may want to work on this with their whānau hapū, iwi or a non‐government organisation (NGO).

Some whānau will want to seek help from specialist Whānau Ora providers who will offer wrap-around services tailored to their needs. Whānau have a practitioner or ‘navigator’ to work with them to identify their needs, help develop a plan to address those needs and broker their access to a range of health and social services.

The Whānau Ora approach will continue to evolve. It has had an impact on whānau building their capability to be more self-managing; providers of services to whānau; whānau who use those services; and government agencies that fund services to whānau.

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