Poipoia te kākano kia puāwai

Nurture the seed and it will blossom

For many of us, 2020 challenged the way we work, learn and live. With this has come opportunities for new ways of thinking and engaging. For the Monitor, we have continued to develop, build capability and test our monitoring approach with the assistance of many.

I would like to thank Oranga Tamariki, Open Home Foundation, Barnardos and Dingwall Trust for the spirit in which they approached working with us. This mahi is new for us all. While the Monitor is independent, and has a responsibility to hold agencies to account, this does not mean that we are distant. If the Monitor is to be successful at influencing change, it is important that we work together and maintain focus on what is best for tamariki, rangatahi and their whānau.

I also want to acknowledge everyone that we’ve met this year. We had the privilege of being out in the community, COVID willing, and met with over 100 stakeholders. We’ve held conversations with iwi, care agencies, non-government organisations, various government agencies, Kaupapa Māori and social service providers. We have been listening carefully, and these conversations are being reflected in the development of the Monitor. Thank you for the gift of your time and wisdom. We look forward to continuing our relationship in 2021.

This is the Monitor’s third and final report focused on regulations 69 and 85 of the National Care Standards. As part of this report, the Monitor was able to capture the voice of a number of frontline staff. In the future, the use of data combined with the voices of rangatahi, whānau, carers, and those working alongside whānau and tamariki, will provide a rich understanding of the Oranga Tamariki system. This will provide insight into the quality of care, what works well and identify any barriers in the system.

This approach includes going back each year to monitor change. Maintaining focus over time drives continuous improvement. It also helps us to understand whether changes are improving the experiences and wellbeing of tamariki and rangatahi.

For the Monitor to be successful, we will continue to live our values. We will be courageous – kia maia, respectful – manaaki, trustworthy – kia pono, kia tika and reflective – kia huritao. Living these values supports us to be credible and worthy of the gift, taonga, of the words, feelings and stories that people share with us so we can help bring positive changes for those in care.

We are looking forward to the next phase of the journey.

Arran Jones, Executive Director

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