Family and Sexual Violence: Whānau have the solutions

Media Release

FOR RELEASE, 19 May 2019

Family and Sexual Violence: Whānau have the solutions

Te Pūtahitanga o Te Waipounamu welcomes the Government’s announcement today of funding of $320 million to break the cycle of family and sexual violence, but seeks a stronger indication of investment in whānau-determined solutions as the platform for change.

“We acknowledge the Government’s intention to give “providers funding security” and the naming of specific initiatives such as Whangaia Ngā Pa Harakeke and Whiria Te Muka in Gisborne, Counties Manukau and Kaitaia” said Helen Leahy, Pouarahi for Te Pūtahitanga o Te Waipounamu.

“We would have liked to have seen an intention to also build on the momentum of Whānau Ora, including the South Island wide strategy, Tū Pono: Te Mana Kaha o Te Whānau. The 23 hui held right across Te Waipounamu have been invaluable in consolidating a strategy to effect change by embedding a kaupapa Māori response to end the impact of violence within the lives of whānau”.

“What we heard from our discussions with over 700 whānau voices is that there is often reticence among whānau in terms of reporting violence in the home; thus, family violence episodes tend to remain unreported until the family situation has escalated over time without any early intervention. Whānau told us, ‘we must be the solutions’ – they were encouraged to ‘deal with the issues’; to live lives filled with mana and to strive for a better tomorrow for all our mokopuna”.

“The South Island strategy for change revolved around moving forward together – creating space for whānau to achieve positive change, putting kotahitanga into practice, treasuring our mokopuna as at the forefront of our strategies”.

“We have been excited by the collaboration between kaupapa Māori providers, the nine iwi of Te Waipounamu, our marae, Whānau Ora entities, Whānau Ora Navigators, Connectors and whānau. Ultimately whānau have said they want to find their own solutions with specialist support, iwi expertise and whānau experience coming together to create collective knowledge, strength and power”.

“Doing the same thing over and over again will only get the same results. We need to ask whānau for their ideas, and support new ways of working to create enduring change. It is time to accept that whānau do not want to be positioned as passive recipients of services and programmes. Whānau have the potential to turn the epidemic of violence around; we need to trust in their solutions and their leadership to work alongside services in preventing and responding to this crisis our nation continues to face”.

About us: Te Pūtahitanga o Te Waipounamu is a Commissioning Agency that works on behalf of the iwi in the South Island to support and enable whānau to create sustained social impact. We do this by developing and investing in ideas and initiatives to improve outcomes for Māori, underpinned by whānau-centred principles and strategies; these include emergency preparedness and disaster recovery. Te Pūtahitanga o Te Waipounamu also invests in Navigator roles to support and build whānau capability.

Media Contact: Ranae Niven, Senior Communications Advisor, Te Pūtahitanga o Te Waipounamu Mobile: +64 021728220 Te Pūtahitanga o Te Waipounamu,10 Show Place, CHRISTCHURCH, www.teputahitanga.org

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