Researchers from Te Weu Tairāwhiti Charitable Trust and Waipapa Taumata Rau – the University of Auckland have received $1,000,000 funding from Manatu Hauora – Ministry of Health to develop a better understanding of the scope and scale of the health and wellbeing impacts of Cyclone Gabrielle on affected communities in Hawke’s Bay and Tairāwhiti.
The funding is the result of a request for proposal commissioned earlier this year.
“By bringing together research expertise and established community networks within the Hawke’s Bay and Tairāwhiti regions we will be able to better to understand how those communities were impacted and how the health system can best respond,” says Dr Ian Town, Chief Science Advisor at Manatū Hauora.
“The widespread impacts of the disaster will tell us a lot about how well-prepared the health system is to cope with adverse weather events and what needs to be done to strengthen community responses.
“Being able to advance our knowledge about the inter-connections between health, wellbeing and community needs during adverse weather events and support the recovery and rebuilding of communities after Cyclone Gabrielle is essential to prepare for future disasters in Aotearoa New Zealand and that’s why we’ve made a significant investment in this research. The findings will be used in conjunction with other relevant research and agency work to implement and build on Aotearoa New Zealand’s disaster response knowledge base.
“This research project is part of our continued commitment to putting research and evidence at the centre of decision-making. It is an important example of how the Ministry of Health is collaborating with the health research, science and innovation systems, and regional communities to prepare for the future,” he said.