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Principal Advisor Māori Whānau Lived Experience

  • Apply Now
  • Location:


  • Applications Close:

    29 November 2021

  • Sector:

    Mental Health
  • Type:


  • Hours:

    Full Time

  • Organisation:

    Mental Health and Wellbeing Commission

  • Contact:

  • Permanent position, Wellington-based
  • Lead critical pieces of work
  • Te Tiriti o Waitangi-grounded organisation

Do you thrive in an environment where you can be part of shaping something new? Are you looking for a role that will have a positive impact on the lives of all people in Aotearoa New Zealand?

The Mental Health and Wellbeing Commission (the Commission) opened its doors on 9 February 2021 to bring leadership and oversight to the transformation of our mental health and addiction system, and to contribute to better and equitable mental health and wellbeing outcomes for all people in Aotearoa.

Reporting to the Director Mental Health and Addiction Sector Leadership team, you will provide expert advice to ensure that the Commission hears and responds to the voices of Māori with lived experience of mental distress or addiction (or both) and their whānau.

You will do this by developing and strengthening relationships with tāngata whai ora networks and whānau organisations and drawing on knowledge developed through personal experience of mental distress or addiction. Integral to your success in this position will be your ability to understand tāngata whai ora and whānau experiences from a Māori worldview.

This is a key position that supports the work of the Commission to understand and advocate for the collective interests of whānau whai ora. This will help drive system transformation that centres equity, Te Tiriti o Waitangi, the rights of Māori, and the moemoea expressed by whānau and tāngata whai ora across Aotearoa.

We are looking for someone who has the following:

  • Expert level experience working with mental health and addiction tāngata whai ora and whānau communities
  • A strong knowledge of te ao Māori and tikanga (kauae raro) as it relates to lived experience and whānau communities
  • Lived experience accessing mental health or addiction services (or both) and using that experience to affect service / system change
  • Demonstrated experience in the development of lived experience frameworks or in bringing Māori worldviews and frameworks to understanding the experiences of whānau and tāngata whai ora
  • Demonstrated ability to operate and contribute at a strategic level
  • Knowledge of health services and systems and broader wellbeing system, social, and economic determinants of mental health
  • Demonstrated commitment to Te Tiriti o Waitangi and a commitment to improving equity of outcomes for tāngata whai ora and whanau Māori
  • Demonstrated ability to build and maintain relationships at all levels, including with tāngata whai ora communities, whānau support organisations, board, senior Ministry officials, health sector leaders, and stakeholders
  • Experience in analysing and interpreting high level issues and information with regard to te ao Māori perspectives and the ability to present in simple and clear ways to enable effective decisions
  • Proven record of delivery of high-quality work and proactive advice, including when working with ambiguity and time constraints

This is a great time to join our small team and contribute to improving mental health and wellbeing for Māori, for our priority population groups, and for all people living in Aotearoa.

As a Te Tiriti o Waitangi-grounded organisation, we are committed to fulfilling our responsibility as an independent Crown entity to honour Te Tiriti o Waitangi and work in partnership with Māori as tangata whenua.

We want our workforce to be a reflection of our communities across Aotearoa and are actively seeking applications from people who represent that diversity.

To apply

Please download the position description and application form. Please send your completed application to

Applications close 12pm Monday, 29 November 2021.

We are looking to make an appointment before Christmas with a likely start date in the new year.