We are delighted to see our funding and resources are helping Tika Rimamate to complete her Bachelor of Health Science with a psychology major at the Auckland University of Technology. So read below the spotlight interview about Tika Rimamate as she will share her inspirations and the wonderful work she hopes to accomplish with her grant.
1. Tell us a bit more about yourself?
I have always been passionate about health care, health promotion and overall healthy living; however, we are not always able to achieve such outcomes due to several implications we face as individuals. These influences on our communities are not always known to the people and adversely cause unfavourable consequences. I seek to help provide the tools needed to live a healthy, fulfilling life. Utilising holistic and traditional practices, whilst backed by scientific evidence.
2. What are you doing?
I am currently completing a Bachelor of Health Science with a psychology major at the Auckland University of Technology. This pathway allows me to explore the various theoretical principles of how we choose to navigate our experiences. Based on the psychological principles of our choices, we can determine the implications and benefits of our health outcomes. The primary focus of my studies is to compile the necessary information about the health and well-being of Māori and Pacific people from a traditional worldview and incorporate these ideas into modern-day health practices.
3. What inspired you to do what you’re doing?
Being of Māori and Pacific descent, I have experienced my fair share of health challenges, and this was mainly due to a lack of knowledge. I am inspired to pursue knowledge that supports a natural approach to healing and maintaining healthy lives and to share this information with Māori and Pacific people affected by deprived communities.
4. Why did you choose to focus on this topic?
The focus on health derives from the notion that we are ultimately responsible for our health and well-being. However, taking responsibility for our health becomes challenging when we are unaware of how to improve our health. The environment and genetics are two factors that are forgotten when we look at preventative measures for positive health outcomes and are only viewed after illness is present. If we incorporate these two factors into our awareness and understanding of health, we can improve the lifestyle of many people. I believe this can be achieved if people are educated with the right tools.
5. What made you decide to apply for an HealthCarePlus Grant for Good? (where did you hear about it)
I heard of healthcare plus grants via a newsletter I received through my work emails. At the time, I was facing several financial challenges. I decided to apply because I wanted to be able to continue my studies. If not for the HealthCarePlus grants, I would have never made it this far, and I am very honoured.
6. How was your experience in Appling for the grant?
It was very exciting applying; although I doubted my ability to obtain such support, I genuinely believe in my purpose to support the Māori and Pacific communities, and in some way, it is my duty to find a way to empower people.
7. How has funding from HealthCarePlus helped?
The Healthcare plus grant has given me the tools needed to succeed in my studies. I have faced several challenges over the past two years, mainly with accessibility and personal barriers. With the grant, I could complete my assignments off-site, gain access to academic journals that are not available to the general public and explore the tools needed to achieve in the educational world. The HealthCarePlus grant has been of enormous help for myself and my three children, and I continue to do very well despite the obstacles I face.
8. What does this grant mean to you?
In my grant application, I mentioned key issues that involve Māori and pacific health within deprived communities and how I can contribute to our communities to improve these circumstances. The acceptance of my application is encouraging and validating and lets me know that I have the support of health focused organisation. The grant will be part of the reason I succeed, and I am very grateful for the opportunities that have been presented.
9. What would you say to others considering but hesitant in applying for a grant?
Be genuine in your approach, have purpose and give it a go. If you believe in what you are doing, so will others.
10. What advice would you give to future Grants for Good applicants?
Read through the requirements and be honest in what you share. It won't be difficult if you enjoy the process, be direct about what you intend to gain, but do it from a caring space.
11. What are you hoping to achieve?
I hope to contribute to positive health outcomes for Māori and Pacific peoples within deprived communities. I hope to achieve this by incorporating spiritual, physical, emotional and social modalities into the overall view of how we maintain personal responsibility for our health.
12. In what way will your course help make a positive impact on others?
People often need reassurance, and we can find reassurance in the knowledge provided to us. However, this is not always accessible. The courses I am completing is designed to familiarise students with research development, scientific research and procedures of analysis. Before information becomes available to others, the information also needs to be validated.
Through these courses, I will be closer to developing my own research project that integrates holistic and modern-day health practices, which may benefit Māori and Pacific, peoples. At present, holistic approaches such as Te whare tapa wha are not implemented or taught to prevent illness and are only observed after disease is present. I aim to see modalities like Te whare tapa wha and others incorporated into our daily lives, not only for Māori and pacific but for anyone who may benefit.
If you are interested and want to know more this year's Grants for Good and how to apply for one then click here.