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Mātauranga Māori provides us with ways to support whānau to heal and overcome trauma, especially if they’re finding things tough. It's about what legacy whānau want to leave for their tamariki and mokopuna.

How do we support whānau who are doing it tough?

Sometimes it can be hard for whānau to move on from negative thinking and behaviour. One of the most common reasons they feel stuck, is the influence of the trauma they’ve experienced in their past.

Mātauranga Māori provides us with rich everyday tikanga, kōrero tuku iho – stories and lessons from Māori ancestors. It help us navigate how we can walk alongside whānau to overcome trauma that they may be holding. This is a good transition point to healing and building knowledge for whānau so they feel free to kōrero without judgement.

Keep it simple at the beginning, try introducing kōrero around whakapapa as a starting point. It provides an opportunity for whānau to think about ‘who they are’ or ‘who they want to be’ for their tamariki and mokopuna.

We have done too much to not do more, we have come too far to not go further.

Tā Hēmi Henare

As whānau supporters we can help by:

  • asking whānau about their whakapapa
  • connecting and reconnecting them to people, community groups and places that recognise whānau whakapapa and culture
  • acknowledging the impacts of colonisation on their whānau and whakapapa
  • creating time to imagine and wonder with whānau what their tīpuna would have wanted for them
  • supporting them to have a recent photo of their tamariki or mokopuna printed and displayed.

Most importantly, believing in them without judgment or expectation will make all the difference.