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Providing the foundation for all cultural and spiritual approaches at Te Tohu o te Ora o Ngāti Awa, the unique model of Te Pou Mataaho has become embedded in our Kaupapa Māori Antenatal and Parenting Programme from 26th June 2019.

Facilitated by Health Promotion Coordinator Kim Rameka, who has over ten years’ experience in high performance physical well-being, personal training and health promotion, the two-day programme is held monthly on site and in the comfortable surrounds of Te Whare Aroha.  Support and comfort for hapū māmā are essential for Kim who keeps class sizes to a minimum.  She says “Hapū māmā have told me that low, intimate class numbers help them feel relaxed and maximise their learning.”

A typical programme includes:

  • Learning about Te Pou Mataaho and how it relates to and can support you through each stage of pregnancy/hapūtanga, child birth and early parenting;
  • Brainstorming, sharing thoughts and ideas, supporting each other;
  • Creating Ipu Whenua and Muka Pito (a very popular aspect of the programme);
  • Learning about your rights as a birthing woman (Tūranga kaupapa) to help with decision making and birth planning.

Kim regularly receives feedback from Midwives that the Māmā of her programme are more noticeably confident during the birthing process.  Māmā have also provided inspirational feedback:

  • “The most important part for me was learning about our rights as Mums”
  • “This wānanga has taught me so much…exactly want I wanted”
  • “I would recommend these classes because I have learnt so much….feeling pretty confident”
  • “It shows that we as women are so strong and that our tīpuna before us were hearty and so are we”
  • “This antenatal class is so amazing”
  • “Mentally I am now more prepared”
  • “This wānanga defintely taught me more about the Māori side of pregancy, labour and post natal care. It really opened my eyes and has made me consider incorporating that side of my ancestry”

Kim feels privileged to support Hapū Māmā and their whānau through this precious stage of life, under the guidance of the Te Pou Mataaho framework.

The TE POU MATAAHO Framework: Antenatal and Pregnancy

An entire module has now been developed that teaches whānau how they can best take care of their hapūtanga, child birth and new born pepi using the 4 pou of Te Pou Mataaho:

Te Pou Ihorangi o Papatūānuku (Spiritual)
Te Pou Tātaiwhakaheke o Hineahuone, (whānau, whakapapa)
Te Pou o Hinetītama (Tūrangawaewae/ whenua)
Te Pou Aotūroa o Wairaka (The world around us/ environmental)

Some examples for each pou include;

    • Karakia
    • Tikanga
    • Meditation
    • Identity
    • Tūrangawaewae
    • Burying of Ipu whenua
    • Hereditary conditions
    • Whānau
    • Support
  • TE POU AOTŪROAEnvironmental
    • Physical body (activity/ nutrition)
    • Relationships
    • Home/ work life

Māmā and pāpā creating Ipu Whenua

Māmā and pāpā creating Muka Pito

Te Pou Mataaho Brain storming session – July 2019

Kim Rameka facilitating the March 2019 wānanga