Free hāngī at the Te Arawa drive-through vaccination clinic
22/09/2021 12:14:37 p.m.

21 September, 2021 

The Te Arawa drive-through vaccination clinic is back and is offering a free hāngī to everyone who gets a vaccine. 

Now open from 10am to 6pm every Sunday and Monday until December, the drive-through clinic is located in the old Foodstuffs Warehouse at 33 Clayton Road, Rotorua. 

The clinic is a by Māori, for Māori partnership that has been set up by Korowai Aroha, Te Rūnanga o Ngāti Pikiao, Western Heights Health Centre, Manaaki Ora, Te Roopu Hauora o Te Arawa and Te Arawa COVID Hub, supported by Lakes DHB, Rotorua Lakes Council and Civil Defence, Foodstuffs and numerous other groups and organisations. 

The semi-permanent drive-through is a direct result of the first clinic’s success, which saw 895 vaccines administered over the three-day period. 

It also comes off the back of the recent Te Arawa iwi declaration; collectively calling on everyone within the rohe to protect each other by getting the COVID-19 vaccination.
Te Rūnanga o Ngāti Pikiao GP and member of Te Roopu Hauora o Te Arawa, Dr Grace Malcolm, says of the 300 vaccines administered on the clinic’s first day, 80 per cent were to Māori – a significant achievement for Te Arawa. 

However, Dr Malcolm says the rate of vaccination among Māori within the Lakes District Health Board boundary remains low and Te Arawa cannot afford to take its foot off the pedal. 

“Our first drive-through clinic removed many of the barriers that have stopped Māori from getting their COVID-19 vaccination and as a result, we saw hundreds of whānau and their bubbles get vaccinated.
“It is crucial we keep this momentum going as vaccination is the best defence we have against COVID-19, so we’re trying to remove even more barriers going forward. 

“The new dates and extended hours were chosen to ensure the drive-through clinic remains convenient and accessible, particularly as the region moves to a lower alert level and people return to work and school,” Dr Malcolm says. 

The traditional Te Arawa spirit of manaakitanga will also be a key part of the drive-through vaccination clinics – ensuring whānau are welcomed and fed in the appropriate way. 

The hāngī are being prepared by Waiariki Hockey, who are fundraising to send four teams to the National Māori Hockey Tournament in Nelson this Labour weekend. 

“We are putting a strong focus on ensuring our Māori and other vulnerable communities can be vaccinated, but this is also for everyone. The more people who are vaccinated, the better protected we will all be,” says Dr Malcolm. 

The vaccines are administered by clinicians and nursing staff from the supporting Māori Health Providers, along with some Lakes DHB staff.

Whānau can make a booking at the drive-through clinic now on 0800 28 29 26 and quote “Te Arawa” or at with the access code BHTKHZZY6E. 

“But we’re also encouraging whānau to simply turn up – whether by foot, bike or in a car. We’ll be happy to see you, however you come through the clinic.” 

Te Arawa drive-through vaccination clinic: 

10am to 6pm, every Sunday and Monday until December 

Old Foodstuffs Warehouse - 33 Clayton Road, Rotorua. 

Every person who receives a vaccine will get a free hāngī meal, individually packaged with two meats, vegetables and stuffing. 

Two ways to book: 

• Call 0800 28 29 26 and quote “Te Arawa”
• Visit // with the access code BHTKHZZY6E
Or just turn up on the day!

Jacky James
Phone: 021 577 871