The social, economic and cultural impacts of COVID-19 are hitting our people the hardest. In the face of a pandemic history has shown that here in Aotearoa, Maaori are the most susceptible. But these are not unprecedented times for our people. Kiingitanga has previously supported our people through the hardship of pandemics. The example of Te Puea and her efforts after the Influenza pandemic of 1918 can guide us in our response today to COVID-19.

COVID-19 has played a significant role in determining our direction over the reporting period of 2021-22. It also forced us to take a more agile and pragmatic approach to both leading and responding to what became a rapidly evolving environment.

The organisation has built strong foundational relationships, and this positioned us well to engage directly with Ministers and agencies to ensure our unique voice was not only heard but resonated and actioned.

During the final quarter in 2022 we advocated for our providers who needed access to RAT tests. Within days Hopuhopu was set up to hold around 600,000 RAT tests for distribution to our front-line services. This combined with $4m of funding that we procured directly from the Government, helped support them to build their own internal service capability. This was delivered to our marae and communities either directly or via our hauora providers. It demonstrated the value in partnering with a single focus underpinned by our King’s tongikura “Amohia ake te ora o te iwi, ka puta ki te whei ao.”

For more information on Covid-19 and national guidelines, please click here.