Members of Te Tatau Kitenga & Te Rōpū:

  • Dr Bridget Farrant – Co-Chair
  • Dr Terryann Clark – Co-Chair
  • Dr Aniva Lawrence (Te Rōpū)
  • Rachel McGillan (Te Rōpū)
  • Dr Audrey Pataki (Robin) (Te Rōpū)
  • Dr Jason Tuhoe (Te Rōpū)
  • Tracey Wihongi (Te Rōpū)
  • Koha Aperahama (Te Rōpū)
  • Dr Frances Robbins (Te Rōpū) 
  • Maraea Savaiinaea (Te Rōpū) 
  • Dr Jessica Allen (SYHPANZ Chair)
  • Dame Sue Bagshaw
  • Dr Vicki Shaw
  • Kate ChiTar
  • Dr Emily Oughton
  • Lee-ann O’Brien
  • Liz Read
  • Dr Cathy Stephenson
  • Toby Hilton


Originally the National Youth Health Leadership Group (NYHLG) was established through a partnership between the Ministry of Health (the Ministry) and the Society of Youth Health Professionals Aotearoa New Zealand (SYHPANZ). The Ministry determined NYHLG would focus on ‘Enhancement programme of School Based Health Services’ in Aotearoa.

In March 2020, a group of twelve Youth Health professionals was brought together by SYHPANZ to form the National Youth Health Leadership Group.  These individuals were selected for:

  • their expertise in developing SBHS models and workforce,
  • their experience working in school models,
  • their experience working with young people, and
  • their wider contributions to the Youth Health sector.

The Ministry confirmed that SYHPANZ’s in-depth knowledge of the Youth Health sector, membership expertise, and extensive networks was well-placed to approach the sector directly for members.

This group of twelve represents a variety of regions (including rural), health professions, and workplaces with differing current models of school-based health care delivery. Within the Youth Health sector, they are considered health experts and youth advocates. A number are also recognised international Youth Health researchers.

Māori and Pacific peoples were represented in NYHLG, and the group is advised by the Kaumatua of SYHPANZ. Part of our initial work is to establish the process and people who will ensure that Treaty obligations, cultural safety, and equity are embedded throughout the way that the NYHLG works.

By mid-2020 as NYHLG became firmly established and the workplan was well underway and SYHPANZ’s Kaumatua was able to have this group acknowledged and gifted a new name Te Tatau Kitenga (Te Tatau), which translates as ‘The Doorway to Foresight’, to recognise the group’s strategic vision for rangatahi/young people and their function as door holders for others.

In August 2020 SYHPANZ and the Ministry agreed to the establishment of a group within Te Tatau that is focused on equity and Māori rangatahi and Kaimahi. Matua gifted a second name Te Rōpū Mātanga o Rangatahi (Te Rōpū), which translates as ‘The Watchmen of Rangatahi’. It is recognised that members of this group are also part of Te Tatau rather than being a separate group and work in partnership to embed equity for this valuable mahi.

To provide expert advice and recommendations to the Ministry of Health on youth-related topics and services, with a particular focus on the enhancement of SBHS. The group is comprised of Youth Health professionals selected for their expertise in developing SBHS models and workforce, their experience working with rangatahi, and their wider contributions to the Youth Health sector.

Māori and Pacific peoples continue to be strongly represented in the group and were enhanced with the formation of Te Rōpū Mātanga O Rangatahi within the group, to ensure the principles of Te Tiriti supported equity are at the forefront of this kaupapa. The development of a foundation like Te Ūkaipō, from which all can nurture models of care for rangatahi, is transformational.

“Kaua e rangiruatia te hoe o te waka e kore e tae ki uta”

Everyone must paddle in unison with equal effort in order for the waka to reach land otherwise it is destined to circle in the bay.

This kaupapa will take a united effort with strong intent, clear focus, and goals to reach our potential and growth for our sector.

Te Tatau Kitenga Original Members