Plunket welcomes the announcement that the Government will be banning smoking in vehicles carrying children under 18 years of age, but says it will require the support of communities to help parents and caregivers to give up smoking. Jane O’Malley, Plunket’s Chief Nurse, said the evidence is overwhelming that exposure to second-hand smoke is a major risk to children’s health. “Ongoing education programmes and increased support services are key to effecting long-lasting change.
New Zealand is in a heatwave! This tropical weather can be really nice (bring on the beach), but it also comes with some hazards that we might not be used to dealing with - especially around our little people. In hot weather, babies and young children can rapidly lose body fluids through sweating - much more so than adults. This fluid loss can lead to dehydration, which is especially dangerous for small children.
Operations of the Karori Plunket Crèche will be transferred to the Karori community in the new year, following successful negotiations between Plunket and crèche parents.
The negotiations began in response to the Karori Under Fives community consultation held in June and July this year, when almost 450 people provided feedback to Plunket about the priority needs of young Karori families. Spokesperson for the Karori Crèche parents, Rachael Bowie, said, "We are thrilled our much-loved and needed community crèche will remain open.
Seven and a half years ago Kaye Connor and her family welcomed their first baby into the world. It wasn’t long before she found herself volunteering for Plunket. This month, Kaye was awarded Plunket Volunteer of the Year for the Auckland region at a function supported by BestStart, Plunket’s Star Partner.
The first participants in a programme helping to educate and support Māori whānau to provide safe sleeping spaces for their new babies will celebrate their success on Sunday 25 November. The Whānau Ora – Raranga Wahakura Pilot Project was developed by Papakura Plunket Nurse Donna Fane to help reduce SUDI (Sudden Unexpected Death in Infancy) rates among Māori. “The Counties Manukau area has the highest SUDI rate within New Zealand.
Plunket has launched a new digital service to help mothers needing extra support with breastfeeding their babies, thanks to a significant donation from the Wright Family Foundation. Mothers referred to the service receive one-on-one support from Plunket Nurses trained as certified lactation consultants*, or fully trained breastfeeding specialists via the new video conferencing service using Zoom software. Available through PlunketLine, Plunket’s 24/7 parent helpline, this new video conferencing service allows Plunket to work directly with mothers who have been referred and provide advice as they are feeding, PlunketLine Manager Denise Shera says.
Plunket supports law reform that helps eliminate smoking in vehicles when children are present, as all smoking is harmful, Chief Nurse Dr Jane O’Malley says. “There is overwhelming evidence that exposure to second-hand smoke is a major risk factor to children’s health. It is implicated in respiratory infections, asthma attacks, sudden unexpected death in infancy (SUDI), glue ear and more.
Plunket has launched a community consultation process to explore the best way to provide continued operation of its six Early Childhood Education (ECE) centres. Plunket Chief Commercial Officer Duncan Scott says Plunket knows that ECE provides long-lasting educational and developmental benefits for children. “We are undertaking this consultation because we want to ensure the continued operation of these services and seek community views on the best way to deliver them in each of these communities.
Harcourts New Zealand in conjunction with the Harcourts Foundation have formed an exclusive long-term partnership with Plunket New Zealand. Plunket is the largest provider of free support services for the development, health and wellbeing of children under five in New Zealand and see approximately 85–90% of newborns in New Zealand each year. Being New Zealand’s largest and most trusted real estate brand, Harcourts offers Plunket the base and network to build and support communities at scale, which was one of the key factors that brought the partners together.
Plunket has teamed up with The Southern Initiative in Manurewa to begin creating a welcoming space designed by and for local whānau. Plunket Community Development Manager Clare Green says the project began in 2017 and there has been some great insights and surprises. “It’s not really about how can you engage with these families, but how can we get to a point where they want to engage with us.