Manaaki Panel meets

23 July 2021

The dreams and aspirations of tāne were the focus when Māori Pathways Case Managers from Hawke’s Bay Regional Prison (HBRP) took part in the first Manaaki Panel meeting this month.

The Manaaki Panel is a group made up of representatives from six Māori providers who have been commissioned by Ngāti Kahungunu Iwi Inc to deliver the Kaiarataki Navigator workforce. The panels give Corrections staff a forum to talk through whānau support options with kaiarataki navigators.

“We took five cases to the first panel hui,” says Principal Case Manager Justin Edwards.

“They are tāne who we are working with who want their whānau alongside them on their journey towards wellbeing.

“The case managers talked about the tāne they are working with, then the panel discussed which of the providers might be best to work with his whānau.

“It was the first one, so there was lots of kōrero about the kind of things that make the best match.  Sometimes a whakapapa link, and knowledge and understanding about a particular whānau, might be the best option. But in other cases, expertise in specific areas, like drug and alcohol treatment, would be better.

“What I found heartening was that we were all guided by tikanga Māori in how we talked about finding the best approach for the men and their whānau.”

Justin says the Whānau Manaaki Plans that have been developed by the Māori Pathways team at HBRP were a feature of the hui.

“Often in the past when we discussed a tāne and what he might need, we start with the deficit  – what they have done wrong and what their problems are.

“In this panel, we changed the structure of the conversation.  We used each man’s Whānau Manaaki plan to talk about his aspirations and what he wanted to achieve.  Of course we had to talk about his taniwha, his issues, but the goals came first.”

Māori Pathways is using kaupapa Māori and whānau centred approaches to work to improve outcomes for Māori.

The kaiarataki navigator workforce is part of Paheretia te Muka Tāngata – Uniting the Threads of Whānau which draws on strengths of the Whānau Ora approach.

“Through the fortnightly Manaaki Panel we will be keeping each other up to date – we want to work well together.

“It is a very new approach so we are keeping open minds as to how we can continually improve our systems and processes in a way that keeps whānau wellbeing as our focus.