Te Karere News interviewed Te Arawa Whānau Ora and Kōwhai Associates in early September 2019 about the implementation of Maramataka into their Workplace Wellbeing Programme.
Healthy Families Rotorua in collaboration with Te Arawa Whānau Ora Collective and Kōwhai Health Associates are the first to incorporate Māori system Maramataka into a workplace wellbeing plan. The organisations use the Maramataka or Māori Lunar Calendar and the various phases of the moon as a planning and observational tool for self-regulating behaviour and wellbeing.
WorkWell - a national initiative developed by Toi Te Ora Public Health - is a free, workplace wellbeing initiative which supports workplaces to ‘work better through wellbeing’. Healthy Families Rotorua, Te Arawa Whānau Ora Collective and Kōwhai Health Associates have adapted the programme to include Maramataka. This Maramataka workplan was designed using Healthy Families NZ’s tools for social innovation. It’s a prototype (small scale) but has the potential to be applied in all workplaces.
Te Arawa Whānau Ora CE Ngaroma Grant says, “Mental health and wellbeing is more than just being free of mental illness. Mental health and wellbeing can increase overall general health and resilience.
The benefits to focusing on mentally healthy workplaces include greater employee retention, higher productivity and a healthier, happier workforce.
In our organisation ‘Taha Hinengaro’ (mental and emotional) needs are supported in a safe environment.
Mindfulness practices are upheld and tikanga Māori values are practiced daily.”
(SOURCE – WorkWell Plan)
Kowhai Health director Cathy Cooney says, “I have gained an understanding of the importance of Maramataka to influencing the ‘rhythms of life’ – energy levels, productivity, focus, innovation. It has also given me a whole new appreciation of the importance of Taiao and Wairua on my life. I find I think about it more and more when things happen in the workplace and especially when I am working with different groups. I think about the need to have balance in my life more and on days when I believe I am less productive I consider Maramataka rather than just getting frustrated and cross with myself for not doing better.”