Kia Ora Hauora
posted by Alastair McLean on 4 April 2012
Innovative approaches to reaching Māori have helped ensure the success of Kia Ora Hauora, a national programme designed to attract Māori recruits into health and disability careers.
General Manager of Māori health at Counties-Manukau District Health Board (DHB), Bernard Te Paa, said Kia Ora Hauora was designed to improve the uptake and achievement levels of Māori students in secondary school science, as well as enhance the recruitment and retention of Māori tertiary students studying in health.
‘Initially Kia Ora Hauora aimed to have 1000 Māori recruits on to health career pathways by 2012,’ he said.
‘The target of 1000 Māori recruits was achieved well within a year of the March 2010 launch and the programme has really taken off, thanks to the enthusiasm and drive of our regional partners.’
Counties Manukau DHB, along with Māori workforce development organisation Te Rau Matatini, leads Kia Ora Hauora through the national coordination centre. This centre works closely with four regional coordination hubs; northern, midlands, central and Te Waipounamu.
Counties Manukau DHB programme manager Tuhakia Keepa said that to really appreciate the breadth of the programme, it’s worth taking a tour of the Kia Ora Hauora website with kaiwhakahaere Ben Mitchell.
‘The site has a lot of information around what to study, where to study and how to get started as well as providing access to scholarships, and information about mentoring programmes,’ he said.
‘We have produced a series of short video clips where Māori health professionals share their passion for their health careers. We also highlight the number of recruits who have signed on to Kia Ora Hauora by iwi and how to get closer to Kia Ora Hauora wherever you live in Aotearoa.’
Registering with Kia Ora Hauora is like joining a national club. On Facebook members find like-minded friends and get alerts on scholarship availability and deadlines. And on YouTube there are more cool ambassadors for Kia Ora Hauora as well.
‘We have been consistent in our message that health careers are both exciting and rewarding,’ Tuhakia said.
‘The creation of strong promotional resources that engage Māori, coupled with a vibrant and growing regional and national presence has resulted in us doubling our target. Today we have more than 2000 Māori considering and exploring health as a career.’
Kia Ora Hauora has also created a suite of support services to address the needs of those registered with the programme. These include science camps, study resources, career mapping tools, tertiary navigation guides.
Tuhakia said that in 2012 Kia Ora Hauora would also offer an online mentoring programme and a science education programme.
‘In addition to this, Kia Ora Hauora has pulled together a database of existing programmes, ensuring Māori are connected to local and national opportunities that exist within the health career sector,’ he said.
‘One of the greatest advantages of being connected to Kia Ora Hauora is having access to the most relevant supports available.’
Kia Ora Hauora is a national Māori workforce development programme designed to recruit, retain and revitalise the Māori health workforce. For more information on Kia Ora Hauora, go to: http://www.kiaorahauora.co.nz