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Rangi has spent 9 years nursing, in both community and tertiary settings, and graduated from Ngā Manukura o Āpōpō in November 2011. She currently works for Waikato DHB as a registered nurse where she also holds a mentoring and preceptor role. At the time that she did the course, she worked for a Māori health care provider. Rangi hails from the Raglan/Kawhia area and whakapapa to Waikato Tainui. ​
Before the Training
Rangi has always felt confident in her professional role, has had a strong sense of whanaungatanga and a good understanding of tikanga. While she has always felt strongly about Māori health however, she was not someone who was actively addressing the issues that pertain to Māori health prior to taking part in the course.

I was aware of things happening but didn’t make it my problem…. I was like an ostrich with my head in the sand. Just wanted to keep going. It was ok because someone else was doing something about it.
During the training
Rangi was highly satisfied with the training. The calibre of the speakers was something that stood out for her, with their vast knowledge and experience and ability to motivate and inspire.

Rangi believes the content of the course covered “all angles” of Māori health, enabling anybody who participated to benefit – no matter their background and experience. She also liked the practical and hands on approach, actually having to undertake project management as part of the course.

The project that Rangi undertook was cardiovascular disease (CVD) risk assessment in a GP clinic together with another course participant. They used an assessment tool developed by Auckland University which estimates the risk of a CVD event in the next five years.

Rangi says that at times, peoples’ different mind sets were challenged during the course. But she points out that it was a safe place for this to happen – and that it allowed for personal growth.

For some it might feel challenging inside. But you kind of have to go through that. That’s the beauty of it. Without the challenge you don’t get that growth.
After the training
The most significant positive change that Ngā Manukura o Āpōpō brought Rangi was a mind shift. She now has a different lens to apply to her personal and professional life. This lens shows her the opportunities rather than the barriers, and the positive incremental steps that are being taken to improve Māori health.

Now when I see those statistics I don’t’ accept them as they are but look at the little incremental steps that people are taking – makes it more positive to me. Before the training I would still be milling things rather than looking at positive ways that we’re contributing.

In terms of her personal life for example, she has always been an active member of her marae. However, the course motivated her to do more – based on the underlying concept that… if you want to make a difference it has to start at home. Rangi is now the treasurer, and is involved in a major building project, a treaty claim, has gathered data and held several presentations.

I’m taking on a bigger role at the marae… I’ve been reluctant to take on an executive position before… with my old head on I thought it would be ok, someone else will do that. I’ll just do this. That was my mind-set.

Professionally, Rangi feels more confident. The course provided her with new tools that she has been able to apply to the preceptor role (e.g., conflict resolution, communication skills), she considers herself to be more reflective, and she feels she is a stronger advocate for Māori.

It’s [the training] taught me different strategies, how we communicate what we are trying to say. How to reframe things. Not to take everything as it is, but being able to explore that a bit more […] A lot of time around Māori care, someone will make a judgement about someone before meeting them – now I can deal with that instead of walking away.

After the course Rangi wrote a set of clinical practice guidelines for the Māori health provider she was working for. She had wanted to write a policy on the subject for some time, but had been halted by the challenges involved (e.g., heavy research base necessary). The course however, changed her way of thinking around it (e.g., that she could achieve a similar outcome through applying a different process), gave her the confidence to do it, and the knowledge of how to get it done.

Rangi is very grateful for the opportunity to take part in Ngā Manukura o Āpōpō, and has promoted it to colleagues and friends.

I’ve told everybody imaginable to do the course, they’ll find it enlightening. I can’t tell people enough about it.

Rangi describes Ngā Manukura o Āpōpō as… totally motivating, totally inspiring. She also describes it as her ‘journey back’, in that she is still where she was before but with different eyes… I’ve come back to myself. Ultimately, she hopes that one day, this journey will take her all the way back to Raglan/Kāwhia, and the West Coast.

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