Totally Acknowledging Our Next Generation’s Abilities
To provide a safe and trusting environment, where through education, opportunities and pathways, all our Rangatahi and Tamariki believe in themselves and reach their full potential.
- To encourage the development of potential, either individually and/or collectively by placing the Rangatahi and Tamariki as the core of the whanau of what we do
- Place Rangatahi and Tamariki at the core of what we do by encouraging their development and potential as individuals and/or a collective
Taonga Education Centre Charitable Trust was registered officially as a Trust in 2004, serving as the catalysts in the development of services to meet the needs of teenage mothers and their tamariki under the umbrella of Taonga Education Centre Charitable Trust’s early childcare, social, cultural, health and education plan.
The name ‘Taonga/Treasure “Totally acknowledging our next generations abilities” was chosen for the Programme because both the mothers and their babies are viewed as “Taonga to the World”. The 2002 academic year saw the launch of what has now become a very successful Programme.
TAONGA operates seven Early Childhood Centres four in Manurewa – Potiki Early Childhood Centre which was opened in January 2006 and is the on-site Early Childhood Centre for the Taonga Teen Parent Unit on Ministry of Education land adjacent to Waimahia Intermediate (formerly Weymouth Intermediate). This is in collaboration with James Cook High School and the host school and Te Homonga o Tamariki Me Hoturoa as the health providers.
Kakano Early Childhood Centre which was opened in November 2007 is on MOE land adjacent to Te Matauranga Primary School and Homai Nga Taonga Early Childhood Centre opened in August 2011 is on MOE land at Homai Primary School.
Nga Taonga Aroha Early Childhood Centre is in Otara, next to the Church of the Epiphany, which was opened in June 2017. This centre is in partnership with the Maori Anglican Church, which comes under Te Hui Amorangi o Te Tai Tokerau on church land.
Taonga opened two more ECE’s in 2019, Aranga Early Childhood Centre in Randwick Park on Auckland Council land at Riverton Reserve and Nga Taonga Manako Early Childhood Centre in Kelston which is also in partnership with the Maori Anglican Church, which comes under Te Hui Amorangi o Te Tai Tokerau on church land.
In July 2020 Taonga took over the management of Eden Campus Early Learning Centre which is the on-site Early Childhood centre for the Eden Campus Teen Parent Unit. This is in collaboration with Auckland Girls Grammar.
TAONGA also operated social services for teenage parents. Te Whare o Taonga is a supported house for 5 young mothers and their pepe/tamariki to live and complete a programme that will support and guide them into independent living and parenting their pepe/tamariki safely and free from abuse and neglect. This programme was opened in January 2011 and is staffed 24/7.
For the teenage mothers enrolled at the Taonga Teen Parent Unit we have on site a Teen Parent Intensive Case Worker to provide social work/care and protection support and a Teen Parent Co-ordinator to provide other types of social support. Located at our head office we have a Teen Parent Intensive Case Worker for the teenage parents in the community.
To support the services for teenage parents we provide transport to and from the Taonga Teen Parent Unit daily and a transporter to provide access to external services. Deliver the Safe Sleep Programme and distribute Pepi-pods to teenage parents in the South Auckland area. Educate and sell child restraints at wholesale prices and educate and hire child restraints to the community.
In 2017 we were successful in gaining the contract through the Counties Manukau District Health Board to provide an antenatal service for teenage parents within the Counties Manukau area. We run antenatal sessions monthly and provide a peer support/home visiting service throughout their pregnancy and 6 weeks post-natal.
We would like to acknowledge that In late-2001 some members of Nga Wahine Atawhai o Matukutureia, a Maori Women’s Welfare League Branch in Manurewa, were approached to determine interest in assisting some teenage mothers who were still of legal school age who had given birth to a baby and were no longer attending school.