Last November at the Hui-ā- Iwi in Dunedin Town Hall, Tā Mark told the hui that he wanted us all to start having meaningful conversations about how we deal with violence in a Ngāi Tahu way. He suggested that he would work with Te Pūtahitanga o Te Waipounamu – our Whānau Ora Commissioning Agency – to consider how our own whānau leadership can be mobilised. And so Tū Pono was born.

Tū Pono has been formed from a consortium comprising representation from Te Rūnanga o Ngāi Tahu; Te Pūtahitanga o Te Waipounamu, Te Whare Hauora; Te Puna Oranga and He Oranga Pounamu.

The consortium have initiated a community engagement campaign to create momentum across whānau, community, marae and papatipu rūnanga to prescribe a way forward in the family violence space.

The campaign has been particularly topical in that an Integrated Service Response pilot will start 1 July in Christchurch. The response team will bring together Police, Child, Youth and Family, Corrections, health, specialist family violence NGOs and Māori service providers. Te Pūtahitanga has been invited to sit at the governance table alongside of two representatives from Te Rūnanga o Ngāi Tahu (Tā Mark Solomon and Lisa Tumahai).

The next hui will be held:

  • Thursday 21 July in Blenheim
  • Tuesday 26 July in Dunedin.

The momentum has been inspirational. The hui to date have focused on the prevention and elimination of harm to our whānau; leading to the aspiration to consolidate strong, healthy safe homes for all our tamariki/mokopuna/whānau to thrive.

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