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Ed Sheeran

South Taranaki iwi combine for pandemic response

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Two south Taranaki iwi have set up a digital iwi response team to help members respond to the COVID-19 lockdown.

The team will call all of the descendants registered with either Te Rūnanga o Ngāti Ruanui and Te Korowai o Ngāruahine regardless of where they are living.

It has also set up an incoming line, 0800 782 684.

Ngāti Ruanui kaiarataki Debbie Ngarewa-Packer says her rūnanga has already delivered hundreds of sanitiser packs to kaumātua and Ngāti Ruanui Healthcare’s Hawera medical centre is the COVID-19 testing site for the region.

She is also a member of the regional Taranaki coordination group, the Ministry of Health’s Māori advisory group, and the National Iwi Chairs Forum pandemic response group.

Te Korowai o Ngāruahine pouhautū Allie Hemara-Wahanui says the two iwi are deploying over 100 staff to deliver on the overall response plan.

The digital response team will be operating as an essential service.

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