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Ka kitea a Matariki I te rangi ka timata te tau hou o te Māori. He wa tirohia whakamuri hei arataki whakamua. Ko Matariki te tohu o te tupu. He wa e puta ke ai, he wa whakariterite, he wa kokiri kaupapa.

When Matariki (Pleiades) is seen in the night sky it signals the start of the Māori New Year. This is a time to reflect on the past and plan for the future. Matariki signals growth, a time for change, a time to prepare, and a time for action.

The virtues of Matariki sparkled brightly at recent hui, focusing on mental health training, in Kaitaia and Whangarei.

Industry Training Organisation Careerforce and Māori workforce development organisation Te Rau Matatini, are both committed to enhancing health and wellbeing through workforce training.

The hui enabled the organisations to share information on the National Certificate in Mental Health & Addiction Support qualification (Level 4).

“Working together with organisations like Te Rau Matatini is the way to make a difference by training more Māori support workers in our community, and the hui highlighted our common goals,” says Careerforce Kaiwhakahaere Matt Matamua.

“Among the iwi, hapu and whānau, there was a wealth of experience, knowledge and enthusiasm for mental health support work in the community,” says Matt. “Gaining this qualification would add depth to that knowledge, and provide a pathway for further career options and advancement.”
The National Certificate in Mental Health & Addiction Support qualification covers work based, home based and supported work group training. The optional strands in whanau and kaupapa Māori allows local tikanga to be incorporated into the assessment of the training.

Maria Baker, the Project Manager at Te Rau Matatini who facilitated the hui, said it was a great opportunity to improve services for Māori in the region, and for whanau self- development.

“Maria generated great enthusiasm and interest in bringing Northland providers and whanau together,” says Matt.

“And our Careerforce Workplace Advisor (CWA) Denise Mackres has helped enormously in developing these valuable relationships. CWAs bring people together, and provide support and guidance for anyone interested in training in our sectors.”