Tākiri ko te ata ki runga o Matawhau. Ko te tau i ahau tēnei ka ora mai. Hoki mai e hine kia whakairia koe ki te kapu o te ringa, nāku i tuku atu…
Te Arawa Whānau Ora Collective and Healthy Families Rotorua continue to lament the loss of a dear friend and leader.
Ngaroma Grant, also known as Mala, was Te Arawa Whānau Ora CEO and Healthy Families Rotorua Co-Chair, roles she determinably shaped over the past 10 years.
The Māori Health leader left behind a legacy of providing whānau with self-efficiency and dreams of a united Te Arawa health system.
She said, “It’s bigger than what we currently think of – bigger than just doing things for people. It’s a way of feeling towards each other. I really like that it’s the way Whānau Ora has evolved in most whānau.”
“Going forward, I’d like us to have a holistic place in Rotorua which operates in a Whānau Ora way, so it allows Te Arawa to support our branding, clinical practice, and environmental change. It allows people to be able to look at career development for themselves but in a special way the whole family owns and participates in.”
“…I’d like us to have a holistic place in Rotorua which operates in a Whānau Ora way…”Ngaroma Grant, Te Arawa Whānau Ora CEO
Six years ago, the Ministry of Health advertised for a lead provider to head Healthy Families Rotorua.
In a collaborative approach, Te Arawa Whānau Ora and Kōwhai Heath Associates submitted a joint application and were awarded the contract with Te Arawa Whānau Ora becoming the lead contract holder.
Co-chair for Healthy Families Rotorua, Cathy Cooney says the quality of Mala’s vision, her mana and wisdom, and her ability to support people to work collaboratively has been an absolute standout – to the point where the collective gained a further contract with the Ministry of Health in 2019 enabling the Healthy Families kaupapa to be further advanced.
“The Māori systems return work has been largely led out of Rotorua with traditional knowledge – mātauranga Māori – being brought back to the fore and given the respect and space needed for this approach to be the guiding principle for building resilient communities.”
“Mala has been really determined to see the potential of Healthy Families Rotorua realised as it is so important for the community as a whole. It particularly provides a new opportunity for Māori in the Te Arawa rohe to unleash the potential of approaches such as maramataka. I just have the hugest admiration for her leadership, her dedication and for the person of integrity she is.”