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Whangaia ka tupu, ka puāwai 
That which is nurtured, blossoms and grows


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A new training, education and support programme that upskills valued caregivers to look after and manaaki children and youth in their care.

Puāwai means to blossom or bloom. It is a new programme that combines the best of clinical and cultural modalities to benefit caregivers, tamariki (children) and their whānau (family). Puāwai is a training and development module-based programme for caregiving families (carers and their children), which aims to improve their collective wellbeing. It is a psychoeducation and whānau capability building approach—it is not therapy. Oranga Tamariki has commissioned Shea Pita & Associates to deliver Puāwai in the Waikato region. Based on client feedback, Oranga Tamariki has recently indicated they wish the programme to continue.

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what is


About Puāwai

What’s different about Puāwai and how do caregivers and their children/youth benefit?

We honour caregivers.

We believe in the valuable role  that all caregivers play, and the potential they all have to nurture  our children and youth, and help them grow into the future leaders they were born to be.

We focus on two key things: building caregiver AND tamariki/youth capacity and capability to thrive

As such, Puāwai consists of two parts: a programme for caregivers and a programme for the tamariki/youth in their care (in development).

We believe in supporting caregivers to believe in themselves first in order to look after others even better.

We believe in the valuable role. We support caregivers in building their skills and knowledge on a wide range of topics, including self-compassion, understanding positive psychology, how to better care for themselves, and understanding trauma and the impact of trauma on those in their care. We also provide useful and practical tools to work on at home potential they all have to nurture our children and youth, and help them grow into the future leaders they were born to be.

We include mātauranga Māori and kaupapa Māori in our programme to introduce the beauty of Māori culture into the caregiving approach.

This includes kaupapa Māori inspired tips, and techniques to support all caregivers who look after Māori children and youth. Our simple, practical, and inclusive support from a cultural perspective is another unique and accessible feature of the Puāwai programme.

We care - before, during and after the programme.

 We engage with caregivers before, during and after the training; offering personalised awhi/support to build a new or strengthened network of friends and peers. People who know what caregivers are going through, and who can potentially support each other after the programme finishes.

Who can attend the caregiver's programme?

Caregivers who have been referred by their local Oranga Tamariki office to us.

How long does it take?

We offer multiple programmes.
They include: 5-week, 8-week, 2 day programmes.
Our programmes are both online and face-to-face/kanohi-ki-te-kanohi.
Programmes may be also be offered during the day and/or during the evening.

Does it cost anything?


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