The  Story

Auckland District Health Board, with its primary care partners, has been moving towards a more community centred approach to healthcare delivery over the past few years.


This locality approach provides an opportunity to partner more closely with patients, families, communities and providers across the system to improve health and the quality of healthcare through delivering supports that meet the specific needs of the communities in which they are delivered.

“Working together we will create the conditions in which individuals, families/whānau and communities can take greater control over their lives to maximise their health & wellbeing.”

This locality approach maintains a sharp focus on putting individuals, their families/whānau and communities’ front and centre in the development of support and services.  Using this approach we opened conversations with the Tamaki community in late 2013 about what area of health to focus on.  Mental health was identified as the initial focus.

Through many interviews, meetings, workshops and surveys, a whole lot of listening and quite a few laughs along the way we have developed an understanding of what is needed to support positive mental health and wellbeing in this community.  

We are now developing and providing new types of support through five key, interconnected streams of activity – Local Wellbeing – Linkages – Support Hours – Whole person/Whole of life care – Primary & Secondary integration.

Committing to partner with local residents, community members have joined us at all levels in this programme: leadership, development and participation in the design team.


The timeline of the journey so far is below and for more information on what we are doing and how we are doing it click here.

"….an experience of mental health and wellbeing focused on the whole person in their family, whanau and community, over the whole of their life supported by integrated services that are relevant to Tamaki"

the co-designed vision...

We asked the community what they want, and they told us:

  • Analysis of health needs

  • Community group

  • Co-design workshop

  • Community survey

Nov 2013 - Mar 2014

Identifying themes

we held a second round of community co-design workshops

  • over 700 ideas; and

  • 32 high level project prososals 

enabling General Practice to do more for mental health

enabling linkages to health & social care in the community

and three streams of focus

enabling the community to care for itself


the vision

Jan - Nov 2013

through over 100 engagements, we asked:

  • What's not so good?

  • What ideas to improve?

  • What ourcomes do you want to see? 



me out?

Who can support me?

Can GPs be enabled to do more?

How can I support myself?

Where can I get support?

we identified 5 core themes

Apr 2014

Generating ideas

and three streams of focus...

we created a working group

  • with over 30 participants working in co-production

  • translated data in to formal proposals

Primary & secondary care integration

primary support hours





Jul  - Dec 2014



and decided on five core initiatives

We established a Social Lab


scaling up and rolling out

Apr 2015 - Dec 2017


whole person care

We developed design thinking skills


story telling

small scale testing


diverge and converge

  • secured resources

  • built programme infrastructure

  • delivering change

2018 onwards

we developed systems thinking skills

systems as cause

dynamic thinking

operational thinking

lever identification

mental models

co-designing outcomes

the outcomes to achieve the vision are to be co-designed in each work-stream.  The outcomes the programme is seeking to achieve are:

vision achieved

learned new service change model and approach

developed services for use in other areas

Refining proposals

Creating change

Generating ideas

Continuing work programmes and developing new skills

Jul 2019

Awhi Ora programme moved to business as usual for Auckland and Waitemata DHBs

Working from the Tāmaki Regeneration Company's social lab. 

Since starting work in Tāmaki the Auckland DHB Wellebeing team has worked with Tāmaki Regeneration Company (TRC) and local non-government organisations.  

We moved into the social lab run by TRC in July 2019 and continue to work in partnership through a number of joint work programmes with the Tāmaki Response projects team.

A network of 11 non-government organisations working together to support people with their wellbeing.  

Available through a number of general practices or through this website.