We acknowledge the past and those with the vision for change.  

Our whakapapa is the decades of mahi by all those who have strived to advance Māori health approaches and solutions, and who fought tirelessly to achieve our health reforms. 

He mihi mutunga kore ki a koutou. 

Breaking Dawn 

A dawn ceremony at Waitangi on 1 July 2022 marked the beginning of a new era in our health system.  

Te Aka Whai Ora was established as an independent statutory entity, to work in a true Tiriti partnership with Te Whatu Ora for better health outcomes in Aotearoa New Zealand.  

Twenty district health boards throughout the motu were disestablished and the newly confirmed boards of Te Aka Whai Ora and Te Whatu Ora held their first joint meeting. 

The Gifting of Our Name 

Tā Mason Durie, alongside an expert team led by pou tikanga Rahui Papa, guided the gifting of our name. 

Te Aka Whai Ora, like the name of Te Whatu Ora - Health New Zealand, is grounded in te ao Māori tradition. It has a strong wairua (spiritual foundation) while retaining te ao hurihuri (ever-changing world) application. 

These two names share a close relationship founded in the ancient legend of Tāwhaki – the tupuna who binds all Aotearoa tribes together. 

Driven by aroha for his whānau, Tāwhaki climbed to the heavens, overcoming supernatural challenges to collect the three baskets of knowledge: 

  • Te kete-tuatea (basket of light) 
  • Te kete-tuauri (basket of darkness) 
  • Te kete-aronui (basket of pursuit). 

Tāwhaki held fast to the strongest aka (vine) as he climbed in search of knowledge.

It is that vine that binds our purpose. Te Aka connects and enables all aspects of our journey. 

The Whakapapa of our Brand Names

Our Tohu

Our supporting tohu represents Te Hau (the wind / Tāwhirimātea) – as it is the wind that creates the momentum, that enables us to move forward. 

The design echoes the visual depiction of Te Hau in Te Waka Hourua Ki Te Pae Tawhiti, strategic work undertaken in earlier mahi to create a visual link to the journey so far. 

The line-weight has been adjusted to incorporate two parallel lines in unison (representing a bird's eye view of the wake of a ‘Waka Hourua’ – a double-hulled waka on te moana). 

Our tohu Our tohu Our tohu