$12.4 million was approved for kaitono within the Tairawhiti DHB.

By 29 May 2022, in Tairawhiti, DHB Māori (12+) 90.5% have had one dose, 87.1% have had two doses, and 58.2% have had their booster. 

Last updated: Friday, 9 June 2023 | Rāmere, 09 Pipiri, 2023

Te Tairawhiti Māori Performing Arts (Whiti Mai) – Phase 1 

MCCF contracted $1.5 million in funding to Te Tairawhiti Māori Performing Arts to help boost vaccination rates in the Gisborne region. 

Te Tairawhiti Māori Performing Arts held a Māori and indigenous led festival and laid out a kaupapa focused on the health and well-being of the community while hosting an array of artistic events. Offering vaccines was part of a bigger conversation at the event, aimed at protecting whānau and the most vulnerable. The community led kaupapa was so successful that at one stage they exhausted their vaccine supply. 

In addition to the festival Te Tairawhiti Māori Performing Arts ran 77 mobile and drive through vaccination events and pop-up clinics. These were supported through 30 billboards, 7,500 fliers and posters and a 6-week campaign across 6 radio stations to encourage whānau to get vaccinated. 

The pūtea provided by the MCCF assisted in lifting first dose vaccination rates in the Gisborne region from 76% to 90% and second vaccination dose rates from 59% to 85%. 

Tūranga Health – Phase 1 

MCCF contracted and fully paid $1 million in funding to Tūranga Health to help boost vaccination rates in Tairawhiti as part of the COVID-19 response in their rohe. 

Tūranga Health encouraged the community to protect their whānau and ‘be a doer! Karawhiua.’ by getting vaccinated at one of the 152 pop up vaccination centres they offered.

Drive through vaccination clinics were held at reserves, Marae and at kura where music and kai were on offer to acknowledge whānau for being proactive about protecting their hauora.

Fry Bread Fridays were introduced for anyone that got vaccinated on a Friday and Tamariki receiving their vaccination could spin the wheel to win prizes. 

To spread the word Tūranga Health delivered real time messaging to promote their events through their social media and other Māori media platforms plus interviews with TV1, TV3, Māori TV, Radio NZ, Tūranga FM and Gisborne Herald.

To help with the large number of vaccination centres run by Tūranga Health, 10 additional Kaiāwhina were trained as vaccinators to keep up with demand. 

The pūtea provided by the MCCF to Tūranga Health helped deliver more than 13,000 vaccinations in Tairawhiti. 

Pango Productions (Whiti Mai) – Phase 1 

MCCF has contracted and fully paid $1 million to Pango Productions to help accelerate vaccination uptake in Tairāwhiti as part of the COVID-19 response. 

The Tairāwhiti region includes pockets of geographically isolated areas, rurally dispersed communities, low socio-economic areas heavily influenced by gangs, and vast areas of sparsely populated hill country and coastlines. 

Pango encouraged the community to get vaccinated by taking trusted information about the COVID-19 vaccine to places whānau live, learn, work and play.

21 sports clubs assisted with the delivery of vaccination events and initiatives were offered to encourage whānau to get vaccinated.  

Pango developed videos showing locals how to get vaccinated and how to download a vaccine pass and did radio interviews with trusted community leaders to spread COVID- 19 messaging.

Pango also held community steering groups and weekly hui to provide a platform for the community to voice their concerns and allow robust discussions. This personal approach and strong relationships in the community were key to the initiative's success. 

The pūtea provided by the MCCF to Pango Productions helped engage and provide trusted information on vaccinations to more than 1,000 whānau in Tairāwhiti. 

Doing it for their community

Resilience is second nature to the people of Tokomaru Bay. In the past nine months, the people of this tight-knit community have been hit by two floods with the most recent in the middle of a community Covid outbreak. Rawinia Parata from Toitū Tairawhiti tells their story.

“As part of the support services to those families in isolation because of Covid, food and welfare packs have been distributed and other support given. These gestures speak to a bigger picture and are all part of the resilience of the community.” 

“In addition to food, the Akau Warriors, as they’ve been dubbed, also distribute sanitation packs, medical care packs, organise payment cards for those in need through MSD (Ministry of Social Development), collect food shopping for whānau as required and check in regularly.” 

“The Akau Warriors continue to check in on whānau in isolation, while manning road closures, coordinating large-scale food and supply deliveries, and ferrying whānau across the river after the bridge dropped out, to enable access to the only shop in the community.” 

“The hapū leads and community groups are supported by Toitū Tairāwhiti, who also supply the kai packs, as part of the Māori Community Covid Funding (MCCF) from Te Puni Kokiri. Toitū Tairāwhiti, on behalf of the four iwi of Tairāwhiti (Ngai Tamanuhiri, Rongowhakaata, Te Aitanga a Māhaki, Ngāti Porou) won $4.8 million in funding to lead projects to support resilience for whanau, hapū and iwi during this phase of the Covid pandemic.” 

$6.15 million allocated to boost Tairawhiti Māori vaccination rate 

Tairāwhiti health providers and front-line workers will receive $6.15 million from the Māori Communities Covid-19 Fund to continue their efforts in increasing Māori vaccination rates. 

The collective recipients are Ngāti Porou Hauora, Tūranga Health, Pango Productions, Te Tairāwhiti Māori Performing Arts, SuperGrans Tairāwhiti, Tūranga FM, Gisborne District Council, Kahungunu executive and Wairoa Taiwhenua. 

It was confirmed today from Associate Minister of Health Peeni Henare's office that the collective is going through the contracting process. 

In addition, a further $250,000 has been allocated to Tairāwhiti iwi and Māori organisations as part of a North Island “proposal” by Te Pou Matakana – Whānau Ora Commissioning Agency.