Government appoints panel to review Whānau Ora

Image: Sid Mosdell

The Minister for Whānau Ora, Peeni Henare, has announced an independent panel will review the Whānau Ora model.

The review will look at how a whānau-centred approach can be applied across government, particularly in the social sector. Mr Henare said:

“This Government has a unique opportunity to work together to achieve ambitious goals that focus on real outcomes for whānau. The review will assess the ability of the Whānau Ora Commissioning Model to make sustainable changes in the wellbeing and development potential of whānau. We want to ensure the Whānau Ora service delivery model and commissioning approach is accountable and transparent in the achievement of outcomes for whānau."

The panel will be led by Caren Rangi as Chair. The other members are Tania Lee Hodges, Te Raumawhitu Kupenga, Donna Matahaere-Atariki, Mereana Kim Ngārimu and Brenda Steele.

Te Puni Kōkiri (TPK) has provided additional information about the review, stating:

"The purpose of the review of Whānau Ora is to:

    • Assess the ability of the Whānau Ora commissioning approach to effect sustainable change in the wellbeing and development potential of whānau;
    • Scope the applicability of a whānau-centred approach as a useful exemplar for improving outcomes for whānau across the government with an emphasis on the social sector; and
    • explore the extent to which the Whānau Ora service delivery model and commissioning approach is accountable and transparent in the achievement of outcomes for whānau.

The Review Panel will also make recommendations in relation to the:

    • wider service delivery and operational environment within which Whānau Ora operates;
    • achievement, accountability and transparency of measurable outcomes;
    • best practice monitoring and evaluation arrangements; and
    • efficacy of the overall Whānau Ora system, as it operates at national, regional, and local levels."

Information will be provided by TPK as to when the public can give feedback. For more information about the review see TPK's Frequently Asked Questions about the Whānau Ora review.

The panel is expected to report on their findings in November 2018 and report back to Cabinet in December 2018.

Background information

The Whānau Ora model was first introduced in 2010 under Minister Tariana Turia. The funding was initially held by TPK. In 2014 the funding model was changed and three non-government commissioning agencies were established: Te Pou Matakana for Te Ika a Māui (North Island), Te Pūtahitanga o Te Waipounamu for Te Waipounamu (South Island) and Pasifika Futures for Pacific families. 

TPK has published reports about Whānau Ora including Formative evaluation of the Whānau Ora commissioning agency model: an independent evaluation report (2016) and Understanding whānau-centred approaches: Analysis of Phase One Whānau Ora research and monitoring results (2015).

The Productivity Commission published Case study: Whānau Ora as an Appendix to their report More effective social services (2015).

Whānau Ora: The first four years was published by the Auditor-General (2015).

Update: TPK has recently published the Whānau Ora Annual Summary Report: 1 July 2016 – 30 June 2017.

For more information about Whānau Ora, see the TPK website.

Related news

The Government is currently holding hui around the country for people to give feedback on the new Crown/Māori relations portfolio.

Selected media

Whānau Ora surplus questions raised at TPK review, Māori TV, 05.12.2018

Whānau Ora Minister demands explanation after commissioning agency pays $600k to its shareholder, One News, 05.12.2018

Major financial concerns raised for Te Puni Kōkiri, Radio NZ, 05.12.2018

Te Puni Kōkiri challenged about contractors, Te Karere TVNZ, 04.12.2018

Do you know what data is being collected about you?, Press Release: Maori Council, Scoop, 07.11.2018

Whanau Ora: No guarantees for promised funding - Jacinda Ardern, Newshub, 22.09.2018

Richard Bradley: Tu Pono: Whānau Ora Campaign Comes to Waikawa Marae, Waatea News, 13.09.2018

Whānau ora cash awaiting proof, Waatea News, 13.09.2018

Fresh scrutiny on Whanau Ora, Waatea News, 12.06.2018

Hundreds sign up to new low-cost health hub, Otago Daily Times, 14.04.2018

Whānau Ora to undergo review, Radio NZ, 11.04.2018

Experienced team for Whanau Ora review, Waatea News, 10.04.2018

Whanau Ora for all, Waatea News, 26.03.2018

Whanau Ora still waiting for state putea, Waatea News, 23.03.2018

Whānau Ora Symposium 2018 brings the Waka together in Marlborough, Waatea News, 19.03.2018

Whanau Ora review looks for evidence of success, Waatea News, 28.01.2018

Image: Tūī on Harakeke by Sid Mosdell. Licence: Attribution 2.0 Generic (CC BY 2.0)