Community and culture

Families and whānau do best when they live in safe, well connected and supportive communities.

New Zealand’s communities are changing, with increasing ethnic, cultural and faith-based diversity. There is mounting evidence of an association between family or whānau connection to strong and cohesive communities and desirable outcomes for children:

better physical and mental health
improved social and emotional development
reduced parental stress and enhanced positive parenting
higher school retention and increased educational achievement
higher levels of employment and income
less social exclusion and isolation.
reduced crime
Family and whānau should be at the heart of thinking and planning for local neighbourhood development and the way in which support and services are provided within communities.

Reports and resources in this section explore issues around family-centred, community-led development and the changing nature of communities, the importance of a whole-of-community response, and ways of working together to grow strong, thriving communities, and settlement experiences in New Zealand.

Inquiry into engaging parents in the education of their children
Submission to the Education and Science Select Committee

The relationship and interactions between schools, families and communities can have a significant bearing on educational outcomes.
Thu 7 Nov, 2013
Download Submission to the Inquiry into engaging parents in the education of their children (381.41 KB)
Families and Whānau Status Report 2013
Towards measuring the wellbeing of families and whānau

The Families and Whānau Status Report is the first in a series that aims to enrich our understanding of family and whānau wellbeing.
Mon 5 Aug, 2013
Download Families and Whānau Status Report 2013 (3.43 MB)
Proposed gambling venue policies
Submission to Auckland Council

The Families Commission supports Auckland Council’s proposals for a cap on the number of standalone TAB venues, and a sinking lid on gaming machine venues and numbers.
Mon 25 Feb, 2013
Download Submission to Auckland Council on proposed gambling venue policies (254.02 KB)
At the Heart
Families at the centre, communities leading

Video based resources to help you think about your work with families and communities.
Mon 25 Feb, 2013
Download At The Heart User Guide (686.7 KB)
Disabled parents
Diversity, experiences, and support needs

This resource shares knowledge about the needs and experiences of disabled parents, and can be used by government and service providers, as well as by parents.
Tue 27 Nov, 2012
Download Disabled parents – Diversity, experiences and support needs (913.1 KB)
Pacific families and problem debt

This research looks at how Pacific families manage their finances. The information can be used by government and providers as they design future initiatives with Pacific families.
Sat 24 Nov, 2012
Download Pacific families and problem debt (1.3 MB)
Tūpuna – Ngā Kaitiaki Mokopuna
A resource for Māori grandparents

This resource explores the experiences of Māori grandparents in New Zealand. It describes the pleasures and pressures of grandparenting and the significant role grandparents play in the lives of whānau. This includes providing support, sharing resources, nurturing mokopuna, and teaching te reo, whakapapa, history and tikanga.
Thu 1 Nov, 2012
Download Tūpuna – Ngā Kaitiaki Mokopuna (986.75 KB)
Family-centred communities
The role of local government

In 2009 the Families Commission and Local Government New Zealand (LGNZ) recognised the key role local government has in influencing and enhancing outcomes for families’ wellbeing in their com
Tue 30 Oct, 2012
Download Family-centred communities: the role of local government (3.39 MB)
Local Government Act 2002 Amendment Bill
Submission to the Local Government and Environment Committee

The Families Commission supported the general principle in this Amendment Bill that local authorities should be fiscally responsible, but opposed the proposal to delete references to community well
Thu 26 Jul, 2012
Download Local Government Act 2002 Amendment Bill (275.46 KB)
Work Experiences of Asian Immigrants
Impact on family wellbeing

This research study explores the work experiences of immigrants of Asian origin living in the greater Auckland region, New Zealand.
Mon 19 Dec, 2011
Download Work experiences of Asian immigrants (433.89 KB)

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