Plunket Nurse Te Rongopai Clay Mackay has been recognised in this year’s New Zealand Nurses Organisation (NZNO) Young Nurse of the Year awards as runner-up.
Te Rongopai, aged 23 and of Ngāti Awa and Tuwharetoa Ki Kawerau descent, has always had a passion for improving the health of her people. She works alongside young mothers, providing them with support as they gain confidence as new parents.
The South Auckland Nappy Bank celebrates a major milestone this week – providing over half a million Huggies® nappies to families in need. Plunket has partnered with Huggies for more than 25 years and the South Auckland Nappy Bank initiative was set up as part of that partnership in 2017. In the Southern Initiative’s ‘Early Years Challenge Report’, data showed that South Auckland was a young population with a higher than average concentration of children aged zero to three.
Plunket Nurse Karen Thurston is looking forward to providing even greater support to whānau in her community following her registration as a nurse practitioner. “It’s a very exciting time for Karen and the local community”, said Dr Jane O’Malley, Plunket’s Chief Nurse, in acknowledging Karen’s achievement. Based in Ngaruawahia, Karen has been a Plunket nurse for 10 years, coming to Plunket as a new graduate.
Following consultation with the Karori community, Plunket will begin negotiations with community members who have expressed an interest in taking over the operation of the Karori Plunket crèche. Plunket’s Chief of Strategy and Performance Radha Balakrishnan says Plunket is committed to working with the Karori community to support the continuation of a sessional, community-operated crèche in Karori. “Plunket understands the importance that the Karori community places on the crèche – and the consultation process has confirmed this.
“Providing good advice and a supportive environment is key to helping mothers and their babies who are learning to breastfeed,” says Dr Jane O’Malley, Plunket’s Chief Nurse. This week Plunket celebrates World Breastfeeding Week (1-7 August) with events throughout the country as part of the Big Latch On, and encourages everyone to support breastfeeding women in all situations. “Although breastfeeding is natural it sometimes doesn’t come naturally, and it’s normal for mums to need extra assistance as they learn this new skill and understand their baby’s needs.
Stephen Deans, Skoda’s National Sales and Corporate Manager, was on hand today to present Plunket Foundation Lottery second prize winner Mohidin Uiese with the keys to a brand new Skoda Fabia. “We are really pleased to be working alongside the Plunket Foundation as part of the Lottery”, Deans said. “It’s a fantastic cause and we know that both Plunket and Lions Clubs provide great support to families across the country.
Plunket is grateful to the thousands of people who supported the Plunket Foundation Lottery, which was drawn on Wednesday 18 July. “It was fantastic to have the support and it means so much to the children and families who will benefit from the work that Plunket and Lions Clubs do in communities across New Zealand”, says Carolyn Mettrick, Lottery Organiser. The Plunket Foundation Lottery was drawn under Police supervision and the prize winners have been contacted.
Plunket Nurse Te Rongopai Clay Mackay is fluent in Te Reo and is using her language skills to kōrero when she visits whānau clients for Well Child checks. “I really enjoy being able to share my love of Te Reo and kōrero with new mums about how they are coping, how their child is doing and to answer any questions they may have. “It makes the checks a much warmer and enriching experience for me and my clients.
Plunket made a submission into the Government Inquiry into Mental Health and Addiction, a process designed to identify unmet needs and develop recommendations for a better mental health and addiction system for Aotearoa New Zealand. The Inquiry asked people to tell them:
What’s working well?
What’s not working well?
What could be done better?
What sort of society would be best for the mental health of all of our people?
Plunket’s submission is based on an understanding of health and well-being informed by Te Whare Tapa Whā model. The four dimensions of well-being, Taha tinana (physical health), Taha Wairua (spiritual health), Taha whānau (family health), and Taha hinengaro (mental health) are equally important to the well-being of tamariki/children and their whānau and family.
“It feels like a second home. ”
That is how Ashleigh feels about the Papakura Supported Playgroup, where she takes her 15-month-old daughter Hannah up to four times a week. “I started coming after the Plunket Nurse told me about it and thought it would be good for me to go along as I was at home a lot of the time and feeling overwhelmed with Hannah.