Kia ora Hauora celebrates the journey and drive of Māori who choose a career in health. A career full of opportunities and possibilities to learn, grow and contribute. Their stories are as varied as they are. They touch lives and in the process serve their communities and their people.
The journey Meri Ira navigated to get to where she is today is a testament to her strength and determination. Mother of six tamariki, Meri Ira was born and raised in Opotiki, and this was where they raised their children.
"I knew I needed to do something. My children became my inspiration to become strong. They helped me believe in myself and they encouraged me in the tough times.
In 2013 I decided to move my whānau to Rotorua to follow my dream of becoming a nurse and I registered in the Bachelor of Nursing degree at Toi Ohomai. I graduated in 2016.
I signed up with the Kia Ora Hauora programme in my first year and I’m grateful for the support of the Midland team, particularly when I needed guidance when transitioning to employment. I am now employed in the Medical Unit at Lakes DHB.
Reflecting on the journey my children and I have taken is always tinged with sadness, but the sacrifices we have made to come this far is incredible. My goal is to not only provide the best quality care for my patients and our Māori people, but to move into the area of Diabetes. It is with a proud heart that I have come this far I hope my passion will empower Māori through nursing."