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Page URL: https://practice.orangatamariki.govt.nz/practice-approach/our-practice-approach/
Printed: 24/04/2024
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Last updated: 07/08/2023

Our practice approach

Our practice approach is framed by te Tiriti o Waitangi (the Treaty of Waitangi) and supported by a mana-enhancing paradigm for practice and draws on Te Ao Māori principles of oranga (wellbeing).

Tohu for Oranga Tamariki practice

Tohu have been used by Māori through the generations to convey meanings of significance.

Each side represents a manu with the mirrored image creating the tail of a Tohorā (whale).

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Core elements of our practice approach

Our approach helps us work more effectively with tamariki and whānau Māori. However, the mana-enhancing paradigm and Te Ao Māori principles of oranga (wellbeing) are relational, inclusive and restorative, and therefore have benefits for all children and families.

A mana-enhancing paradigm for practice recognises that it is possible to undertake our challenging and complex mahi in a way that is respectful, relational and restorative. The mana-enhancing paradigm has a strong foundation in social work practice in Aotearoa New Zealand and embodies 5 core components:

  • Te Ao Māori is valuable knowledge – it helps guide and enhance our relationships with tamariki/mokopuna, rangatahi and whānau.
  • The significance of history – through which underlying and intergenerational trauma and resilience can be understood.
  • Valuing narratives as cultural identity helps to understand what tamariki/mokopuna, rangatahi and whānau experience, value, identify and connect with.
  • Māori concepts of wellbeing are critical to understanding, maintaining, restoring and strengthening oranga.
  • Principled practice means knowing and understanding the influence of who we are, and why we think and behave the way we do in our practice.

Māori-centred social work practice | orangatamariki.govt.nz

Te Ao Māori principles of oranga (wellbeing) are central to Oranga Tamariki social work practice. They help us understand the journey of oranga for all tamariki, families, whānau, hapū, iwi and family groups we work with.

Te Ao Māori principles of oranga

How we are approaching our practice

We are moving from a predominantly western, eurocentric practice position to a Māori-centred position. This involves:

  • supporting and developing our kaimahi to embrace our practice approach
  • enabling Oranga Tamariki systems to support our practice approach and reduce inequities
  • enabling our partners to practise effectively with tamariki, whānau, hapū and iwi.

Our practice approach sits within a continuum of approaches

Continuum with western/eurocentric on left, Māori-centred practice in the middle and Kaupapa Māori on right.

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