Our specialist foster-care programme for young people aged 12 to 17 in the care of Oranga Tamariki provides an opportunity for young people to form positive connections that allow significant changes to occur.
Te Waka Kotahi believes that everyone connected to a young person – including their whānau, foster parent, mentor, social workers, Oranga Tamariki and school or college – is working towards a common goal: to bring this precious young person safely to the shore where they can heal and grow strong.
In all cases, we work with young people and their whānau for one year. During this year the young person lives with a foster parent and goes to school, college or special day programme, depending on their needs.
Interested in becoming a foster parent?
If you think you have the skills to join the team at Te Waka Kotahi by providing care to a young person in your home, we’d love to hear from you. We have positions available for full-time and part-time foster parents, as well as roles as youth mentors.
Download our application pack to find out more or to apply to become a foster parent.
The rewards – and challenges – of being a foster parent
Being a foster parent with Te Waka Kotahi, our specialist foster-care programme, isn’t all rainbows and unicorns. But as full-time foster parent Dean Davies points out, it offers plenty of rewards.
What’s special about Te Waka Kotahi
Young people from the ages of 12 to 17 years are referred to Te Waka Kotahi by Oranga Tamariki who work with us in a partnership and who fund this service.
Te Waka Kotahi provides an opportunity for for the young person to form positive connections with schools, sports clubs, and peers – all of which are essential for their future growth and enjoyment. Access to specialist services is arranged as needed.
Typically young people join Te Waka Kotahi after experiencing many ‘failed’ placements, with limited fragmented schooling and insecurities from living in unsettled and frequently unsafe environments.
By providing stable and caring living arrangements significant positive changes can occur in the young people.
In addition to foster home arrangements Te Waka Kotahi provides Te Whare Whakapakari (House of Strength, Nurture and Self Esteem) in Tawa. This home provides a family environment and home support for three young people for whom living at home is no longer an option.
The approach in Te Waka Kotahi is shaped by our Wesley Way – with a strong emphasis on identifying and growing the young people’s strengths.