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Saturday 08 April 2017

Takatāpui resource focuses on whānau support

Posted in: New Zealand Daily News
By Daily News staff - 30th March 2017

The importance of whānau support in improving the wellbeing of takatāpui youth is highlighted in a newly released, free resource.

Resource creators Morgan Butler (RainbowYOUTH), Toni Duder (RainbowYOUTH) and Elizabeth Kerekere (Tīwhanawhana Trust)
The resource, Growing up Takatāpui: Whānau Journeys, is the result of a collaboration between Tīwhanawhana Trust Chair and takatāpui activist Dr Elizabeth Kerekere and RainbowYOUTH.

Available for free in print and as a digital resource, it offers ways in which whānau can support their youth using the Te Whare Tapa Whā Maori health model.

The project received funding from Te Ara Whiriwhiri, Te Puni Kōrkiri and It’s Not OK which has allowed for the development of a website to make the resource more interactive and accessible. The website includes audio excerpts from seven takatāpui youth and their whānau who were interviewed about the importance of whānau support.

Dr Kerekere says “our takatāpui rangatahi often experience discrimination, violence and rejection because of their diverse sexes, sexualities and gender identities. Studies show that this leads to higher rates of depression, self-harm and suicide than for their heterosexual and cisgender peers. Because whānau support is the Number One protective factor for our young people, we have created this resource with whānau, for whānau.”

RainbowYOUTH’s Communications and Operations Manager Toni Duder was the Project Manager for the resource and says “The resource is aimed at whānau, so we are hoping that it can be used to help young people build their communication with whānau. And in the support work we do, we’re hoping that the resource will be a tool that we can give to whānau of RainbowYOUTH members to help them with their journey towards acceptance and support.”

As part of the interview process, Duder says “Being able to meet and listen to the stories of these incredible people was a ‘I can’t believe I actually have this job’ kind of moment. These stories are taonga that we are so excited to share in a way that hopefully helps those who are struggling. I’m very proud of this resource”.

You can access the resource here.

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