Te Korowai o Ngā Ringa Āwhina is celebrating the recent graduation of 18 tauira from their bachelor and diploma of nursing programmes who were supported through its tuakana-teina initiative funded by Te Aka Whai Ora.

The group graduated from Manukau Institute of Technology (MIT) last month and at the end of last month sat their State Final Examination set by the Nursing Council to become registered nurse health professionals.

Te Korowai o Ngā Ringa Āwhina is a Māori nurse-led kaupapa formed from the rōpu of Māori nurses and student nurses at MIT, who have been demonstrating tuakana-teina for the last 20 years.

Their moemoea (aspiration) of demonstrating self-determination is by opening a Māori nurse-led primary care practice later this year and to continuing to support nursing students at MIT.

Te Korowai o Ngā Ringa Āwhina is a kaupapa Māori nurse-led medical practice which provides clinical placements to student nurses and nurse practitioner interns studying at MIT.

It involves holding wānanga on nursing with a focus on Māori health needs, self-reflection and critique, leadership development, safe practice, professional conduct, Nursing Council competencies, and information on post-graduate education pathways.

It also includes tutorials in science, pharmacology and academic writing by qualified tutors, and mentoring to guide students on their career and learning journey. Intertwined in all the initiatives is also kapa haka, tikanga and marae-based learning.

Chief Nursing Officer at Te Aka Whai Ora, Nadine Gray (Te Whakatōhea), says it is exciting to already see the impacts of the funding.

“This kaupapa will have direct and far-reaching benefits to the new graduates but also to their whānau and the thousands of lives they will impact positively on.

“We are so proud of what these students have been able to achieve with the support of Te Korowai o Ngā Ringa Āwhina and wish them all the very best for their future health workforce careers.”

Nadine adds that having more Registered Nurses and Enrolled Nurses who are strong in their Māoritanga, will lead to a workforce in Aotearoa that better reflects the communities they serve.

“This is a by Māori, for Māori approach to growing our health workforce.”

Te Korowai o Ngā Ringa Āwhina is one of seven hauora Māori partners across Aotearoa who received funding from Te Aka Whai Ora to design, deliver and implement their own tuakana-teina programmes to support Māori within, and transitioning into, the health workforce.  

Tuakana-teina is a concept that refers to the relationship between an older (tuakana) and a younger (teina) person. Within teaching and learning contexts, this can take a variety of forms such as peer-to-peer, younger to older, older to younger, or novice to expert.