A Northland iwi working towards introducing Maori culture to a global parenting programme hope the mahi will shine a light on the importance of whanau and tamariki.

The Ngati Hine Health Trust, in partnership with parenting researchers of the University of Auckland and developers of the Triple-P Positive Parenting Programme at the University of Queensland, is working towards bringing aspects of Maori culture to the renowned parenting programme.

The aim is to take the adapted scheme nationwide.

Chairman of the Ngati Hine Health Trust Gwen Tepania-Palmer said the project was an extension of many schemes run by the trust, including Whanau Ora and Te Mirumiru - the iwi's early education programme for preschoolers.

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"Whanau-based programmes are absolutely critical because they can provide that connectivity, they provide that support, they include whanaungatanga and they let our tamariki know they grow up in a world that they belong to."

Titled Te Whanau Pou Toru, named in consultation with Ngati Hine kaumatua and kuia, the programme will look at the development of a child, whanau roles, and behaviour while introducing aspects of Maori culture including tikanga and language.

"Some things include talking about the importance of karakia, the importance of kai time - what do you want kai time to look like?

"Creating that environment that allows korero."

Ms Tepania-Palmer said a parenting programme with a Maori focus would be beneficial for Maori.

Maori clinical psychologist Dr Matt Shepherd, who facilitates the discussion group, invited whanau or parents of tamariki aged 3 to 7-years old from Whangarei and Kawakawa to take part.

Te Whanau Pou Toru involves attending a couple of two-hour parenting discussion groups on building positive relationships and learning ways that can help with the behaviour of tamariki.

-Parents from Kawakawa or Whangarei should contact Val Joyce on 0800 942 628 (Whangarei), 0800 737 573 (Kawakawa), 027 255 5199 or val@nhht.co.nz.

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