Summer 2017 newsletter - message from the Director 

By Lucy Summers | Posted: Tuesday November 28, 2017

We are excited to release our latest newsletter featuring the work of Family Start. 

The Family Start programme makes a significant difference to the lives of newborn babies and their families, and we are now expanding this service to rural South Otago, Central Otago, Upper Clutha and Queenstown Lakes.

The Ministry for Vulnerable Children ­– Oranga Tamariki is a significant funder for this work, but we also rely on donations from the community to fully meet the costs of delivering Family Start.

We met recently with staff from the Ministry for Vulnerable Children Partnering for Outcomes team to explore ways of strengthening our partnership. This was a productive discussion, and we note with interest a recent communication from Deputy Chief Executive Celia Patrick, Partnering for Outcomes (15 November). Celia stated that:

“Achieving our vision of a New Zealand that values the wellbeing of tamariki above all else is not something we can do alone … strengthening our strategic partnerships is one of our foundation building blocks, and we are making changes that reflect our confidence in the work our partners do.”

We look forward to continuing this discussion into next year as we negotiate our respective roles in achieving the best possible environment of safety and wellbeing for children and families in our community.

We are fast approaching the end of another year and Christmas – a time that accentuates the needs of children in our community who may live without the basic requirements: a safe environment, healthy food, or adequate clothing. Christmas advertising portrays the ‘ideal’ happy family – this does create anxiety and stress for those families whose circumstances may not be as rosy as those portrayed in advertisements. The glamour of the glittery world of Christmas seen in advertising is often far from the reality, and the commercial pressures on families can be acute.

We will be working hard to support families through this time, and I wish to acknowledge the very hard work of our staff. Thank you also to you, our supporters, who make what we do possible.

Nicola Taylor

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