There are loads of benefits to bringing up kids in New Zealand. One of them is the great range of support for new parents you’ll receive through Whānau Āwhina Plunket.
Founded more than a century ago, Whānau Āwhina Plunket was developed to help kiwi kids get a great start in life and provide support to new parents and families. Fast-forward to today and they’re still at it!
One of the most important services that Whānau Āwhina Plunket offers is the Well Child Tamariki Ora programme. This national programme, of which Whānau Āwhina Plunket is the largest provider, includes health and development assessments for your baby, plenty of advice and support for new parents, as well as help for the rest of the family adjusting to the needs of a new member. And the really brilliant thing is this service is free for all New Zealanders.
You can also call PlunketLine, a free parenting helpline, any time you need to on 0800 933 922. They’re available 24 hours a day, seven days a week and they’re always happy to help. The Plunket website is here
The Well Child Tamariki Ora programme: what to expect
There’s something really comforting about having an expert on hand – especially once you arrive home with your new baby and start putting into practice all the things you’ve learnt!
Well Child Tamariki Ora visits can take place in your home or a local Whānau Āwhina Plunket clinic, or community spaces (for example, preschools or marae). Whānau Āwhina Plunket nurses can also hold virtual visits by phone or video conferencing.
Many of the first visits are in the first few months and year, where people find some extra support is most helpful.
At these visits parents and caregivers can talk about anything and everything that’s top of mind for them: breast or bottle feeding, sleep (or the lack of it), parental mental health, difficult situations at home, tantrums – anything.
Whānau Āwhina Plunket nurses will also do a health and development assessment with each child at each check they’re growing and developing as expected. These checks are valuable for picking up any developmental concerns nice and early, so your little one can have the best possible start at life.
Wattie’s forbaby is proud to be a Pick Me Help Plunket partner. Wattie’s and Whānau Āwhina Plunket recently celebrated 30 years of partnership and working together to support New Zealand families with information and resources about infant nutrition.