This special edition Whānau Ora Journal brings together the kōrero , trials, and triumphs of WOCA partners and whānau from across Te Ika-a-Māui in response to the arrival of COVID-19. Each account highlights the sheer determination, innovation, creativity, and unwavering fortitude of partners and whānau in seeking to protect and care for themselves and their communities, covering the period from March 2020 to June 2021.
It is the 2020 response, particularly, that has provided the primary impetus for this journal. You will read stories of amazing resilience, innovation and enterprise, inspirational leadership, rugged determination and unwavering belief in the collective capacity of whānau. You will read first-hand accounts of how the distinctive leadership and diverse talents of our iwi , hapū and communities have been activated to care for and to look after one another. Each story is aligned to the values or kaupapa that are most evident within each account. This form of categorising seeks to highlight and demonstrate the ways in which WOCA partners have given unbridled expression to the Whānau Ora kaupapa.
In many ways, this special edition journal represents far more than just accounts of collective responses to COVID-19. It provides a seminal precis of what can be achieved when Māori have autonomy over critical decision-making processes that ultimately affect the welfare and wellbeing of Māori. This special edition journal also signifies the growing advancement and prominence of Whānau Ora and its kaupapa. The kaupapa of Whānau Ora is founded on the values of manaakitanga , whanaungatanga , aroha, rangatiratanga, kaitiakitanga, wairuatanga and mauri. The Whānau Ora Commissioning Agency partners are at the cutting edge of values-based service delivery, working within their communities to support whānau to achieve their aspirational goals.
These stories should also serve as a powerful message to Government decision-makers and members of Opposition alike, that Whānau Ora works. It works because it places the greatest needs and aspirations of whānau at the centre of everything. It works because the efforts of WOCA and their partners are guided by the kaupapa, or values, passed down to them by their tūpuna, their ancestors. It works because it is an approach that is informed by the evolving mātauranga of Māori and the rangatiratanga of our kaumātua and pakeke. And it works because tikanga Māori, Māori practices, reflect values that are grounded in Māori ways of knowing and doing.
Wai Rangahau are deeply grateful to the Whānau Ora Commissioning Agency, their partners and whānau from across Te Ika-a-Māui for sharing their kōrero, trials and triumphs in responding to COVID-19.