How we get involved

How we support whānau

Where possible we try to keep families together. Taking children into care is a last resort. We are working more and more with iwi and communities to support at-risk children to stay with their parents. Use the tabs to find out how we do this. 

Reports of concern

Of the more than 1.1 million children in New Zealand, the majority (approximately 80%) will never come to the attention of Oranga Tamariki. But there are some families and whānau who need extra help and support.

That’s why we're working in partnership with an increasing number of iwi, Māori and community organisations to help families and whānau earlier with issues that put children at risk.  

About 10 people contact us every hour with concerns about a child. Over the past year we have averaged 240 calls and emails every day from the community  doctors, teachers, neighbours and police. Concerns relate to drug and alcohol addiction among parents, neglect, physical, sexual and emotional abuse of children, and family violence. 

From the reports of concern we receive, we make 100 assessments each day. Of these assessments there is the equivalent of two classrooms of children who we have never had contact with before. 

COVID-19 variance

During the COVID-19 lock-down period there were fewer reports of concern. We believe this was because everyone had to stay home and there weren’t as many people like teachers and doctors able to watch out for children.

Read our operational reporting for data collected from 26 March to 9 June

A diverse team

To meet the needs of at-risk children we are a diverse group of professionals and community-minded individuals with specialist skills.

3 years on diverse 23

Image text description – Our diverse team

This image illustrates that:

  • We have 1,752 front-line social workers, of whom 86% are women and 26% identify as Māori.
  • We have 3,561 caregivers, 62% are whānau caregivers, and 329 are specially trained to help children who’ve lived with trauma.
  • We work with and fund around 500 non-government organisation (NGO) partners to provide services for children and families and whānau, to keep them safe and well.
  • About 25% of these NGOs are Māori organisations.