Issue #14

Omicron has now peaked within most of our hapori. As Māori, we have done what we always do and protected our whānau.

Issue #14



 Tēnā koutou e ngā iwi 

Omicron has now peaked within most of our hapori. As Māori, we have done what we always do and protected our whānau. 

Whether you’ve been helping with care and kai packs, being a reassuring voice over the phone or connecting your community to the help they need, the Karawhiua team mihi to you and the mahi you’ve done to keep us all safe. 

Many of our whānau have passed on with COVID-19 recently. Our condolences are with all people grieving the loss of a loved one right now. Mā tō tātou kaihanga rātou e poipoi i a koutou e noho pani ana, māna hoki koutou e whakaputa hoki ki te whai ao, ki te ao mārama.

Finally, Karawhiua had its first birthday last week. Karawhiua was established to protect our people against COVID-19. As Māori, our commitment to whānau and community will never end. But now is a good time to reflect on everything we have accomplished together over the past year.

O mātou tini whakaaro māhana,

Karawhiua team.



Karawhiua update 

Have you been wondering where we’ve been? With funding secured until the end of 2022, we’ve been in a planning phase. We have new kaimahi on board and a renewed focus to help whānau become more resilient to COVID-19. 

We are developing a Karawhiua workstream for tāngata whaikaha and tāngata whaiora and refreshing our website so that it works better for all our whānau. There are some exciting new video plans in the works also… Can’t wait to share this with you in next month’s pānui! 

Anō hoki, we’ve decided that now is the right time to make our pānui monthly. The payoff is we will try to make it twice as good. 


New online RAT and PCR test map 


Yeah, we are pretty excited about this one! We’ve created a new online map for whānau to find out where to pick up a RAT or PCR test near them. You can find it on our website here.

The new map is incredibly easy to use and takes less than a minute to find your nearest centre. Check out our helpful instructional video.

It is especially important for whānau who are symptomatic and need to get a test quickly, or those who work or study and need to get a test at a time that works for them. 


Matakaoa – Community of the Year!!! 


The incredible Matakaoa community has been named the 2022 winner of Ngā Pou Whirinaki o te Tau – Aotearoa Community of the Year award. Matakaoa has been the leading light for Māori communities since the beginning of the pandemic, starting with checkpoints. They shared information about vaccination and misinformation early with whānau and made vital decisions using tikanga and te ao Māori methodologies. Matakaoa have continuously led the way in finding innovative ways to connect with whānau, whether it be through doctors and scientists, storytelling or crowdfunding. 

Karawhiua was incredibly privileged to work with the Matakaoa community to create a hugely successful national campaign that showcased the character of this amazing community and the reasons why they were choosing to be vaccinated. The campaign resonated with Māori across the motu as our people saw others who looked, acted, and sounded like them. Karawhiua congratulates Matakaoa on their award and their exemplary mahi in responding to the dangers of COVID-19. 


Future planning – we need your feedback 

Whānau mā, we need you to tell us how Karawhiua needs to change, so we can keep navigating the Karawhiua waka in a direction set by our people. 

Please take a few minutes to answer three key pātai in our survey: 

  • What awesome stories and kaupapa should Karawhiua be promoting 
  • What does Karawhiua need to do more of 
  • How can we support you and your whānau, hapū, iwi or rōpu?

You can find the survey here. If you’d rather email us, send your whakaaro to: We are grateful for your feedback. 


Funding for community initiatives 

We want to fund whānau-focused localised campaigns, initiatives, or events such as a reconnecting whānau hauora day or parakuihi thanking kaimahi who worked throughout the Omicron peak. If you have any awesome kaupapa we can help with, please email us at:


Nōku te Ao: Like Minds


Nōku te Ao: Like Minds describes itself as a social movement to end prejudice and discrimination and increase inclusion for people with experience of mental distress. It has recently shared a video from Chloe Fergusson-Tibble (Ngāpuhi and Ngāti Kahungunu ki Wairoa) who talks about looking to whānau, community and other trusted sources for information when making a decision about getting a COVID-19 vaccination. Chloe is one of eight tāngata whaiora who share their personal experiences and choices that guided their decisions to get the vaccine. Check out their new video series – Tū Pakari, Tū Taha: Stand Strong, Stand Beside.


Tāngata whaikaha


Billy Wilson keeps the home fires burning by managing Te Hora Marae in Canvastown. He suffers from the effects of chronic gout. Enjoy this warm and engaging kōrero with Billy as he explains how things have been for him during the pandemic and how Te Hora has responded to the dangers of COVID-19.

You can watch it on the Tāngata Whaikaha Facebook page.


Te Whānau o Waipareira 

One of the best things to come out of COVID-19 is watching kaimahi develop new skillsets they may have never considered possible. Rangatahi have begun flourishing new content creation careers through their mahi promoting vaccination, and many white-collar office workers have been deployed to the frontline. 

The image above is of 'Youngatira' from Te Whānau o Waipareira who became trained vaccinators during the pandemic.  


Te Rūnanga o Ngāi Tahu 


The Whānau and Emergency Response team at Te Rūnanga o Ngāi Tahu has been ensuring whānau are being looked after with care packages while they’re dealing with the effects of COVID-19. Passionate rangatahi are leading the way in keeping whānau safe. Watch this amazing video about KOWHEORI-19 care packs and whānau support.


Important vaccination updates 

Flu vaccinations are now available and free for all Māori 55+. The flu vaccination is incredibly important this year as there has been very low levels of flu in the last two years with our borders closed. Our immunity to the flu is much lower than usual so we need to be vigilant Please let our pakeke know that now is the time to contact their trusted hauora kaimahi to make a booking. Also, keep an eye on your local Māori hauora provider, as some are providing free flu vaccinations for Māori. 

16- and 17-year-olds are now able to get a booster. They can get one six months after their second dose. We encourage all whānau to get a booster, especially those who are at a higher risk of severe outcomes from COVID-19 or who have a whānau member who is, such as immunocompromised. 

If you’ve contracted COVID-19, you can get a vaccination three months after you have recovered. After you get infected, your body builds up a strong natural protection to COVID-19, so this isn’t the best time to get your booster. After three months, this protection decreases, and a booster becomes the best protection you have. However, if you are at high risk of severe disease if you catch COVID-19 again, it’s recommended that you talk to your healthcare professional for advice on timing of your next dose.