Family for Every Child, VOYCE – Whakarongo Mai and Grandparents Raising Grandchildren recently came together to launch the ‘Tick 4 Kids’ care and protection scorecard for political parties, as well as our new online gallery where you can join a virtual hikoi to parliament to ask for better care for children.
Watch the webinar recording for the launch event ‘Take Action for Tamariki – Reimagining New Zealand’s Care System’, to learn more about the urgent challenges within New Zealand’s care system and the need to work towards better outcomes for all tamariki and rangatahi. This event focussed on the crucial commitments, policies, and practices required to improve outcomes for children who are unable to live in their home of origin, and the actions supporters and allies can take to support these.
During the event, key discussion points included the need for better support for children in care and their caregivers, especially those in informal care. There are over 30,000 tamariki and rangatahi in New Zealand that are cared for by other loving family members or by caregivers who have become their legal guardians. These children have the same needs as the children that go through the formal State Care System, however they often don’t have the access to the funded support to meet their emotional, therapeutic, health or educational needs.
“If we can’t support the caregivers, the caregivers can’t support the children, and if they can’t support the children, the cycle is just going to keep going.” – Christina Howe, Grandparents Raising Grandchildren
The intergenerational cycle of trauma, ongoing effects of colonisation and importance of identity and whakapapa was also discussed in relation to the over-representation of Māori children in care.
““ I feel like we’ve just really missed the point when we focus on improving a system that technically should not exist, we should be focused on removing the need for that. And for me, that sits with support for whānau to heal from the wounds that they’ve had inflicted upon them in order to protect our future generations.” – Tupua Urlich, VOYCE – Whakarongo Mai
The event also explored the actions that supporters and allies can take to support better outcomes for children in Aotearoa. Learn more in the recording, and access some tools and resources to support your own advocacy efforts here.