Profile of Mana Wāhine Day in Lower Hutt

Mana Wāhine Day
Mana Wāhine Day
In October, Mana Wāhine Independent Service Providers hosted a Mana Wāhine Day. The joint effort included Hora Te Pai (Kapiti Coast), Ora Toa Health Unit (Porirua), Kokiri Marae Hauroa (Hutt Valley) and Koraunui Marae (Stokes Valley).

The event at Takapuwahia in Porirua was primarily held to provide free cervical screening education and information to priority group women, with a focus on wāhine Māori. However, all priority group wāhine were invited to attend.

Women had the opportunity to have a free smear, enrol in BreastScreen Aotearoa and participate in an educational game of breast and cervical screening wharewhare (bingo).

Guest speakers who presented on the day were:

  • Lucie Kennedy, who talked about genetic testing and mastectomy
  • Lisa Lawrence, who talked about her journey with cervical cancer.

Women were also offered a variety of pampering, along with spiritual and educational services, including:

  • nail art and make up
  • foot spas and massage chairs
  • mirimiri, rongoa maori and relief body therapy
  • card readings.                                 

Around 100 wāhine attended the event, with 12 having a smear and two enrolling in BreastScreen Aotearoa.

A collective effort helped to make the day a success, with Mana Wāhine providers putting a lot of planning and thought into how they could engage with their priority group wāhine.

Advertising on social media and on radio played a key role in reaching the women.

“We shared the event on our Facebook page, which has engaged with more than 500 women since we launched the page in March. Social media seems to be one of our most popular avenues to engage with women. This was one of the best ways we advertised the day,” says Tira Albert, manager of Mana Wāhine.

“We also contacted Te Atiawa Toa FM which played an advertisement on the radio and sent personal invitations to wāhine on the National Cervical Screening Programme recall list registered with Ora Toa.’

Mana Wāhine took the opportunity to celebrate the dedication and passion of one of its nurses, Anne Webster. Anne has been involved with Mana Wāhine as a smeartaker for 15 years and is retiring at the end of this year.

Acknowledgement must also go to the other organisations and services who contributed to the success of the day: Ora Toa PHO, regional screening services, Compass Health PHO, Te Awakairangi Health Network, Ora Tika, Relief Body Therapy, and Maraea Makarini (freelance make-up artist).


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Page last updated: 19 December 2017