Roles within Strengthening Families

To get the support you and your whānau or family needs, the Strengthening Families process relies on people working together. Find out more about what everybody does.

Lead contact

Every whānau or family is assigned a lead contact person – this could be a budget advisor, social worker, school principal or other professional. They set up and run meetings, and draft and circulate an action plan.

After the first meeting, they check to see whether or not the things agreed to by everyone are actually being done.

As well as providing the required support to the whānau or family to achieve their actions, the lead contact may modify the plan if there is a change of circumstances.

The Strengthening Families coordinator needs to be kept up-to-date of progress and any changes, and to supply a final report.

A lead agency may be decided as soon as the whānau or family get involved with Strengthening Families, or it might be decided at the first meeting.

Meeting facilitator

To make sure everyone gets the most out of any meetings, an independent person may run them. This person makes sure everybody has a say and keeps the meeting focused on the needs of the whānau or family.

Community and government agencies

In addition to Ministry of Social Development, 11 other government agencies currently participate in the Strengthening Families process:

  • ACC
  • Oranga Tamariki
  • Department of Corrections
  • Department of Internal Affairs
  • District Health Boards
  • Housing New Zealand
  • Inland Revenue
  • Ministry of Education
  • Ministry of Health
  • Ministry of Justice
  • New Zealand Police.

The types of support they provide include:

  • social work
  • truancy services
  • budget advice
  • accommodation referrals
  • health programmes
  • schooling and other education services
  • counselling.

Strengthening Families coordinator

Coordinators keep the Strengthening Families process running smoothly.

They make sure the whānau or family and the community and government agencies are aware of the service that Strengthening Families provide, and make sure they communicate with each other. 

There are about 60 coordinators across Aotearoa, mostly employed in community organisations.

Local Management Groups (LMGs)

60 local management groups (LMGs) oversee Strengthening Families – they support the coordinators and help government and community organisations work together to provide support and services. 

A group of people from the main agencies meet regularly to see how Strengthening Families is working in each area. 

They also look at whether extra or different services are needed to fill gaps, and try to find better ways to promote the Strengthening Families process.

Members come from government agencies, local authorities, iwi and community groups.

Published: June 28, 2022