31 May 2013

Health service urges struggling whanau to turn to iwi

7:37 am on 31 May 2013

An Auckland-based Maori health service is urging whanau struggling to feed their children to reach out to their iwi communities.

The Government this week announced it is expanding a scheme to deliver breakfast in schools.

Leonie Matoe of Te Hotu Manawa Maori says the increase in the programme is a start but is not enough to address child poverty.

She says there are many reasons why some whanau are struggling, they including low incomes and the cost of housing.

The nutrition and physical activity manager says whanau sometimes do not want to ask for help.

But Ms Matoe urges whanau to reach out to iwi organisations such as hauora and gardening communities.

She says whanau can learn to grow their own kai and become more independent.

Ms Matoe says it also promotes socialisation and can help families and their children not to become isolated.