Our work in the Tamaki community
Learn about our programmes and community education classes
The work we do in the Tamaki community is at the forefront of our mission. When we set up our programmes, we looked closely at the areas in the community that we could help, aligning with the Sisters of Mercy and Te Waipuna Puawai’s values of meeting the unmet needs of the community through invitation.
Our programmes and initiatives are guided by three core themes:
- Papatūānuku: fostering earth awareness and responding to the call to heal the environment
- Te Tiriti o Waitangi: commitment to the Treaty of Waitangi and working in ways that work for Māori whānau and communities
- Tikanga Atawhai: the practice of mercy values
The HEART Movement
The HEART Movement is a community-led initiative in Tāmaki launched in February 2012.
HEART developed from conversations between community organisations and community members about working to prevent family violence before it happens rather than only responding to violence after it has occurred.
HEART is an evidence-based initiative and is using local research with community members and leaders to inform the development of its actions and to measure change over time.
HEART has developed a Theory of Change that involves two strands of work: Community Mobilisation and Organisational Capacity, and Collaboration Development.
Our Home Interaction Programme for Parents and Youngsters (HIPPY) is a two-year programme for pre-school aged children, helping parents build experiences and learnings that lay the foundation for their children’s success in school and later life. HIPPY is a structured programme, utilising workbooks and courses to support children’s development and learning.
Through this programme, we aim to help parents play an important role in their child’s education. This parental participation not only supports children, but opens opportunities for parents into training, education and employment.
Love and Perseverance
When the HIPPY program was recommended for our son by his preschool teacher, we were a little apprehensive as to whether or not we would be able to carry this out for the long term.
Prior to starting the program our son was not able to sit down long enough for us to even read him a story, let alone follow a program!
Most times our son is happy to sit down for HIPPY. Other times he says he does not want to do it. But on these days, we do not just give in. We encouraged him to do his HIPPY work first and then he can go play or do whatever it is he was doing.
Our son had very few words in his vocabulary at the start. He was not able to follow instructions or answer simple questions. We often get frustrated with him and he would act out or miss-behave. We ‘Loved’ our son very much but felt like we were losing the battle.
We are grateful for the HIPPY program because after just two and a half months, our son has developed a love for books. He has shown so much interest in the stories and characters we read about. While we are reading to him, he points at the pages and ask questions. Sometimes we see him sitting down trying reading to his little brother (who is only 1)
Kathan has definitely grown his vocabulary in the last two and half months. We have noticed the more he understands the better he is able to express himself. This has led to less frustrations and tantrums. He has learnt new shapes and songs. He really enjoys cutting, gluing down strips of paper making shapes and coloring. Kathan has learnt the difference between ‘big and small’, ‘short and tall’. Still working on ‘same and different’.
A quote from his teacher,” We have noticed a difference in Kathan here at preschool and he is concentrating a bit more on tasks more than others”
Our son has learnt to write his name! We are so proud of him.
Sreion and Kathan
Community Education Classes
We continue to provide community education classes and programmes to address the needs of women in the local Tamaki community. Through self-development and culturally-based programmes, we focus on physical, mental, spiritual and whānau well-being.
Our practical courses aid their development and provide a variety of education programmes, such as:
- Computer courses
- Sewing classes
- Cooking classes
- Cultural practices
- Self development classes using Māori concepts of well-being (oranga wairua, mana atua, mana tupuna
In partnership with local community businesses and organisations, we provide support for the Tamaki community and families in need. In order to make a meaningful difference, we offer a range of support services, one-to-one social work, counselling and food and clothing parcels.
In order to keep providing valuable support, we welcome donations of clothes, food and items that we can distribute to families in need.