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Hutt Valley Matariki achieving excellence in Maori Health Awards 2019

Fuseworks Media
Fuseworks Media

An outstanding community health worker and an organisation changing the lives of people suffering from respiratory conditions were the supreme winners at Hutt Valley DHB’s first ever Matariki Achieving Excellence in Māori Health Awards.

The awards, led by Hutt Valley DHB’s Māori Health Team, celebrated everything our people do to improve whānau experience, eliminate health inequities for Māori or develop the Māori workforce.

Held early-July in Lower Hutt, the awards were timed to coincide with the rising of the Matariki (star cluster) marking the Māori New Year.

There were two Te Mana Whakahaere (supreme awards) announced on the night, which recognized the recipient’s ability to demonstrate excellence across Te Ao Māori and Te Ao Hurihuri.

The first Te Mana Whakahaere went to Mere Te Paki from Hutt Union and Community Health Services.

Mere Te Paki "exemplified Māori ways of being, and works tirelessly to make a difference for the clients and whānau she serves," said Hutt Valley DHB Māori health director Kerry Dougall.

"As a community health worker, she is highly valued for her mahi, her professionalism and the awhi and manaaki she gives to her clients and their whānau.

"She is respected by her colleagues, by the general practices, and by the staff of the many organisations and agencies she works with."

The other Te Mana Whakahaere winner was the Tu Kotahi Maori Asthma and Research Trust, which improves the lives of those living with asthma and other respiratory conditions through improved understanding of respiratory illnesses, management, education and support.

"Tu Kotahi excelled at working alongside whānau using the values and principles of a Whānau Ora model of care."

There were 45 nominations in five categories - each category being named after one of the stars of Matariki. Please see full list of winners below.

The awards were part of Hutt Valley DHB’s plan to achieve equity for Māori health within nine years, which is a key focus of the DHB’s Māori Health Strategy Te Pae Amorangi being launched on July 17.

The work is strengthened by the DHB’s values of Always Caring, Can Do, In Partnership and Being our Best.

Kerry said the awards were part of a bigger picture aimed at celebrating the outstanding commitment and contribution of those working within the community, DHB and wider health networks.

Each of the finalists demonstrated a high caliber of Māori success and accomplishment in making positive outcomes in the lives of whanau and our community, she said.

"The night was a huge success and the DHB is looking forward to continuing these annual awards as it is important to build on and acknowledge the tremendous work that is being done."

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