Tēnā kōutou katoa e te whānau,

These are unprecedented times, and we know the next while will be challenging for our whānau, iwi and hapū.

Our Wairoa community response group has been meeting daily to establish ways everyone can support each other as we navigate the health, social, cultural and economic effects of COVID-19. We have a network dedicated to this kaupapa, which includes local health and social services providers, Civil Defence, social organisations, iwi, hapū, local business, as well as lcoal and national Government. Ngā mihi ki Te Taiwhenua o Te Wairoa, nā rātou tēnei roopu e ārahi.

We know many in our community are not connected digitally, so we encourage you to share the information in this pānui with them.

Simple precautions you can take:

We can all do our part to help prevent the spread of COVID-19.

  1. Wash our hands with soap regularly, for 20 seconds each time.
  2. Maintain physical distance – Try to refrain from hongi, hugs and handshakes using the elbow tap, nod, or karakia instead.
  3. Stay home if we’re sick or think we may have been exposed to illness.
  4. Find safe ways to support our older or more vulnerable community members
  5. Don’t panic buy bulk groceries and supplies. Be sensible and community minded – there is enough to go round for everyone.
  6. Avoid public events of 100 or more: Currently all public events of 100 people or more are discouraged. Every community organisation, club, society, churches and marae are asked to please follow these to reduce the risk of COVID-19 spreading.  We encourage everyone to keep having these conversations around public events and to be sensible and avoid putting our community at risk. It’s great to see most are taking this seriously and doing this already.

More information on COVID-19 and symptoms, can be found here: www.covid19.govt.nz. It is important that you familiarise yourself with all the updated official information from the Government via this website. You can also call Healthline on 0800 358 5453 at any time of the day or night.

Important: If you are feeling sick, please stay home and ring the Healthline number above, or your local health centre for further advice on 06 838 8333. Please do not go to our hospital if you think you are displaying COVID-19 symptoms – ring from home first and they will guide you on what to do.

Support to help with financial hardship:

Many in our community may be experiencing financial hardship due to what is happening with the economy currently, be it via reduced work hours or job loss. There is organised support for all our workers, their families and employers who live in Wairoa. Please contact Wairoa Taiwhenua, weekdays from 9am – 3 pm on 06 838 4748 or call in to their Bridge Street office for more information. 

Approved health posters:

For businesses, if you would like current information posters to hang at your organisation or anywhere you feel they may be helpful, these can be collected free-of-charge from Wairoa Taiwhenua, from their Bridge Street office (9am – 3pm, Monday to Friday). If you would like them them emailed to you – please contact wairoa.tai.whenua@xtra.co.nz.


We have been asked to help coordinate marae with how they will respond. We are calling together marae to discuss the recommendations and how this may affect the use of marae and tikanga practices. Please contact your respective marae in the first instance, and visit the marae facebook page or website. 

It goes without saying, but it is important that we work together as a collective to stop the spread of COVID-19 in Aoteraoa, and protect our people and our communities. Tātau Tātau means together, so please do not hesitate to reach out if you need support.

It is important we remain strong, act sensibly and without panic, and that we take the correct precautions. Kōrero with your whānau, and make sure they are feeling safe and not overwhelmed.

Kai te mihi nei ki a kōutou i tautoko mai.

Hai konā mai i roto i te tauwhiro a te runga rawa, nā

Lewis Ratapu

General manager

Tātau Tātau o Te Wairoa