The Waikato DHB joins the Matariki celebrations and works with hauora partners to help you protect your whanau against winter illnesses this special time of year.
The DHB and provider partners like Te Kohao Health have put together a series of events that combine family fun and getting protected and prepared for winter.
The Matariki health event series kicked off last Saturday with a whānau hauora event at the Matariki Market Day at the Hamilton Gardens where people had the chance to get immunised while enjoying kai, taonga Māori and live entertainment.
Waikato DHB Covid-19 and Immunisation Directorate executive lead Maree Munro says the DHB is strongly encouraging everyone to take a moment this Matariki to reflect on their health and wellbeing "and to take the actions necessary to protect themselves and their whānau from falling seriously ill this winter".
The DHB, GPs, pharmacies and kaupapa Māori providers throughout Waikato have made great efforts to date to help the region's communities get protected against winter illnesses.
Munro says that dedicated teams have worked "extremely hard" to ensure that equity remained a focus throughout the vaccination efforts.
"However, while our DHB region has administered the highest number of flu vaccinations to our Māori population so far, we have still only reached 53 per cent of Māori eligible for a free flu vaccination and only 52 per cent of Pacific people."
Below are Matariki events supported by kaupapa Māori health providers throughout the Waikato.
• Te Papanui Enderley Community Centre will be hosting three Matariki events from June 21 to 23 June supported by Nga Miro, Raukura and Te Kohao Health.
• Matariki ceremony (hautapu) hosted by Matawhānui Trust on June 23 and 24 at Wāhi Pā (Huntly)
• South Waikato Pacific Island Community Services Trust and the DHB are collaborating to run a Matariki health event in Tokoroa on June 23.
• Ngāti Tumutumu Trust will offer its first whānau hauora event on June 24.
• Matawhānui Trust will host a private screening of the Lion King Te Reo Māori premiere on June 26 at Chartwell Cinema.
• The Waikato DHB is supporting an event at the Raglan Creative Matariki Market on June 26.
• The Maniapoto Whānau Ora Centre in Te Kuiti will hold a Matariki vax day on June 28.
• The Taumarunui Community Kokiri Trust will also host a Matariki vax day on June 29.
• Te Kohao Health plans to support a "Matariki in the City" whānau hauora event at Garden Place in Hamilton on July 16.