The lived experienced Mental Health and Addiction workforce comprises two per cent of the overall Mental Health and Addiction workforce. This figure includes both Māori and Non-Māori. Based on assumptions from existing workforce data it is probable that Māori with lived experience makes up less than 0.2% of this workforce. Kaimahi Māori employed in the sector in lived experience workforce roles include consumer advisors, consumer educators, and peer support workers.
The valuable contribution of lived experience and the need to grow this workforce were expressed by service providers during the recent Government Inquiry into Mental Health and Addiction. Whaiora Māori have also shared with Te Rau Ora’s Te Kete Pounamu, at a number of hui across Aotearoa, their aspirations to be employed in roles where they can use their skills and knowledge to support tāngata whaiora to achieve Pae Ora. These requests highlight the need for a framework that has Māori with lived experience who have the skills and ability to support and mentor this workforce as it grows.
Mā Purapura Mai is a Māori lived experienced leadership programme comprised of five wānanga delivered by Pamela Armstrong, Tania Tito-Edge (Kaiarataki, Te Rau Ora), and Kerri Butler (Kaiwhakahaere Te Kete Pounamu, Te Rau Ora) over a five month period. The foundation of Mā Purapura Mai was developed from Tapuhi Angitu, a Maori leadership wananga programme that was developed and delivered by Tania Tito-Edge, Pamela Armstrong, and Moe Milne. Tapuhi Angitu was adapted to meet the specific needs of Māori with lived experience employed in or aspiring to be in leadership roles.
Lived experienced leaders will be able to use their mātauranga to influence positive health outcomes for tangāta whaiora at all levels of the sector. The Dynamics of Whanaungatanga were incorporated as a foundation framework to support tauira to grow, develop, and strengthen their knowledge and skills to:
- create a solid foundation for leadership,
- strengthen their relational networks,
- amplify the voice of Māori with lived experience to improve health outcomes, and
- communicate effectively to lead and support
The Mā Purapura Mai wānanga were supported by a dynamic and inspiring group of guest presenters such as Jason Haitana, Wiremu Heihei, Tui Taurua, Henare Waru, and Shane White who all walk the talk as lived experience leaders locally, regionally, and nationally.