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Te Rōpu Whakaruruhau

Whaia te ao Māori
Rangahauä te matauranga
Pursue the world of the Māori
Research the knowledge

Te timatanga o te reo - Kei ngā wai ū o te whaea


Optimising breastfeeding for Māori babies, mothers and their whānau


  • Tino rangatiratanga
  • Kaitiakitanga
  • Manaakitanga
  • Kotahitanga


Te Rōpu Whakaruruhau has been established to support, promote and protect breastfeeding for Māori through the provision of expert advice and support to New Zealand Breastfeeding Alliance (NZBA) Board in the delivery of the Baby Friendly Initiatives and its other roles.

Responsibilities and Functions

This will include:

  • Supporting Māori NZBA Board members to enhance the cultural responsiveness of the NZBA Board and staff
  • Together with the NZBA Board developing of NZBA’s Strategic Plans
  • Providing strategic direction to the New Zealand Breastfeeding Alliance Strategic Plan 2016.2022
  • Guidance to NZBA on strategies to improve Māori breastfeeding rates
  • Supporting implementation of the Strategic Plan via actions that champion breastfeeding for Māori that include
    • translating experiences of tipuna/upuna to lead traditional breastfeeding practices with the overarching purpose of improving outcomes for whānau.
    • identifying strategies that will maximize opportunities for Māori participation within the Baby Friendly environment.


Te Rōpu Whakaruruhau membership is skills and competency based noting the holistic vision of Māori health.  Members are selected by Te Rōpu Whakaruruhau based on his/her expertise and the perspectives s/he bring from a range of areas including:-

  • Midwifery
  • Lactation
  • Maternal health
  • Child health
  • Leadership
  • Māori providers
  • Whanau ora
  • General Practice/medicine
  • Nutrition/dietetics
  • Consumers

The group will be made up of a minimum of five memebers, and a maximum of eight.

Representation from mana whenua is mandatory.

Members need to have the capacity to commit to the role, contribute and attend meetings.


Te Rōpu Whakaruruhau will appoint a chair from its membership for a two-year term.

The chairperson of Te Rōpu Whakaruruhau will be a Māori member of the New Zealand Breastfeeding Alliance Board.


  • At least four time per year by Zoom and/or face-to-face (February, May, August and November)
  • Travel expenses to attend meetings are covered by NZBA
  • Members will receive a standard meeting fee set by the NZBA
  • The NZBA Māori Advisor provides support and administration for Te Rōpu Whakaruruhau.



Te Rōpu Whakaruruhau will provide quarterly verbal and narrative reports to the Executive Officer and the Board of NZBA.


These terms of reference will be reviewed as at May 2022.


Members of Te Rōpu Whakaruruhau as at May 2021

Henare Edwards, Kaumatua

Wendy Dallas-Katoa, Taua, JP, Research, Whanau ora, PHN

Tasha Wharerau, Chairperson & NZBA Board, Women's Health Promoter, Women's Health Action

Amy WrayMidwife, Lactation Consultant

Carlo Kamo, Well Child Tamariki Ora nurse, Plunket Whānau Āwhina

Sarah-Anne Waihoaka Wills, Registered Midwife, Whānau Mau Kaupapa Māori Antenatal Pregnancy & Parenting Programme

Click here to view the Māori Breastfeeding Strategic Directions 2016 - 2021

Clice here to view New Zealand Breastfeeding Alliance policy on Māori Responsiveness March 2018