Ngā Tini Whetū

Ngā Tini Whetū is a whānau-centred early-intervention support designed to strengthen families and improve the safety and wellbeing of children. There are two phases of Ngā Tini Whetū - a prototype phase and a test phase.

Last updated: Rāmere, 22 Poutūterangi, 2024 | Friday, 22 March 2024

The Prototype Phase

In 2019-2021, Ngā Tini Whetū delivered early-intervention support for 800 whānau across Te Ika-ā-Māui by Te Pou Matakana in partnership with Te Puni Kōkiri, Oranga Tamariki and the Accident Compensation Corporation (ACC).

Key characteristics of the prototype included:

  1. Joint funding across government agencies
  2. Broader, unique approaches to measurement and reporting whānau progress towards wellbeing outcomes
  3. Measurement and reporting against agency specific outcomes
  4. Lower navigation to whānau ratio (providing more intensive support to whānau)
  5. Shared discretionary funding
  6. Greater flexibility for whānau and provider collectives to develop and deliver services.

The prototype phase provided compelling evidence that Ngā Tini Whetū improved whānau wellbeing across several wellbeing domains, as a result of the cross-agency investment.

Data and insights on the prototype produced in the aftermath of the prototype supported the budget bid for the testing phase. You can read more about the Ngā Tini Whetū prototype here and an independent evaluation of the prototype here.

The Test Phase

The Ngā Tini Whetū testing phase seeks to provide targeted and intensive support for pēpi and whānau during the First 1000 Days (using the key characteristics outlined above). This supports the government’s objectives under the Child Youth Wellbeing Strategy.

The testing phase formally commences in March 2024.

The government approved $64.4m over four years in funding to support the implementation of the Ngā Tini Whetū test phase. ACC will also continue their contribution to Ngā Tini Whetū.

A summative evaluation of the prototype highlighted the need for a Social Return on Investment (SROI) analysis, sustained agency leadership, improved agency staff understanding of the initiative, and the benefits of cross-agency involvement. The testing phase will respond to these findings.

The initiative will continue to test system change across three levels:

  1. System-setting and levers for support and change, including cross-government collaboration and decentralised decision-making
  2. Funding and contracting mechanisms
  3. Whānau Ora commissioning to support the achievement of Whānau Ora outcomes by whānau.

More information