Congratulations to E tū member Mere Te Paki, a Supreme Award winner in the first ever Matariki Te Mana Whakahaere Awards, an initiative by the Hutt Valley DHB to celebrate work by Maori to improve health outcomes for tangata whenua. The award ceremony in early July was timed to coincide with Matariki, which marks the Maori New Year.
The Award recognises Mere’s outstanding work as a community health worker for the Hutt Union and Community Health Services. In a glowing tribute, the DHB praised Mere’s tireless work to improve the lives of her clients and the whanau she serves.
“I’m very appreciative. It’s a humbling experience and it’s a great thing,” says Mere. “As a Maori wahine, it’s not just for me. It’s acknowledging Maori in the workforce – our capability and our strength. I think it’s all about the relationships you build, so I accept it for all of us. We all do the same mahi at the end of the day,” she says.