Whakatu - a rural community in Hawkes Bay and home to around 1,000 people. It was a community struck by the Covid 19 Lockdown - like many hundreds around the country. But unlike other communities - Whakatu came together as one with morning karakia on the streets and residents supporting each other regardless of background, age or status.
The sense of aroha and mana was captured beautifully by Moana Maniapoto in this video that featured on Maori Television. Des Ratima is a pivotal part of the Whakatu rohe - some even refer to him as the "Unofficial Whakatu Mayor". Des said they are a success story thanks to the resources provided by Whānau Ora. "Lockdown showed Whānau Ora as a game changer. In this community Pakeha were emotional receiving help from Maori - it was a great equaliser" Des said.