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Bringing prevention successes to the forefront

Preventing the rise of chronic disease and health inequity continues to be key to improving health outcomes amongst all New Zealanders. Social and physical environments that enable healthy food and physical activity choices, being smokefree, addressing the harms from alcohol and increasing mental health, resilience and wellbeing are key to happier and healthier lives.   

Addressing inequities and preventing chronic disease is a complex challenge that requires a comprehensive package and commitment to partnering for impact, scaling the work of communities, adapting and experimenting and leadership at all levels.  And to meet the needs of our whānau we must offer innovative solutions and ensure they reflect the aspirations of our communities.

Healthy Families NZ has been addressing the underlying conditions that impact health and wellbeing for a decade now. Our proven prevention initiative is already operating in ways that Pae Ora | Healthy Futures is seeking to achieve.

Some of the conditions and systems our Healthy Families NZ locations team have shifted and influenced include:

  • Creating Smokefree environments through smokefree and vapefree policies in local government.

  • Improving the wellbeing of Sāmoan teachers with Tāfesilafa’i a ‘community of care’ model

  • Cross-sector partnerships that have created play opportunities in Tairāwhiti

  • An initiative to create healthier rewards for juniors in sport and a pro-water movement

  • Transforming the local food system with community food hubs in South Auckland

  • Innovation and activations to make play more accessible in Invercargill

  • Redesigning the kai system to achieve a local end-to-end food supply chain in Whanganui

With a decade of experience navigating a national initiative, which is locally led and community driven, we have continually evolved our practice and action, always looking to innovate and respond to community needs.

We have learnt that real transformational change requires bringing prevention successes to the forefront, scaling interventions that have been shown to work, and building capability and sharing our practice with system partners, so that they can learn from us what a systems change approach to preventing chronic disease looks like.

Now is the time to be bold, courageous and tenacious, and adopt approaches that are sustainable to advance wellbeing, prevent chronic disease, and achieve health equity.


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