Open Access Open Access  Restricted Access Subscription Access

Mana Motuhake o Ngāti Porou: Decolonising Health Literacy

Teah Carlson


This paper explores decolonising health literacy by reclaiming historical practices shared by Māori to develop a kaupapa Māori health literacy evaluation framework. The work is based on a research innovation within a Primary Health Organisation – Ngāti Porou Hauora – that defines health literacy within the context of the community. This research promotes reclamation of health literacy as a space for Māori to be ourselves; a space that is negotiated, adaptive, and shaped by people, whānau (family group) and communities. The framework attempts to reflect participants’ voices, perceptions, understandings and experiences. Its design was informed by a kaupapa Māori praxis, and aspires to co-ownership, mutually beneficial outcomes and shared power through prioritising participants’ voices to shape and develop the criteria for determining the goals and action areas related to health literacy. The framework includes overall goals and action areas for practicing effective health literacy at individual, whānau, health professional, intervention/programme, and organisational levels. This paper is an example of how Māori can promote and practice health literacy in the context of our histories, honouring a pathway of transformation through decolonising methods.


health literacy, evaluation practices, Indigenous, Kaupapa Māori evaluation, decolonisation

Full Text: