Working with children

Children’s Teams

The Children’s Team approach is a way of working hand in hand with families and whānau to create safer lives for at-risk children. It's not another service, but it’s a different approach.

We work together with other agencies, non-government organisations and communities to put the child first and ensure their voices are heard. Together we share information and create one plan for each child.

Transition of Children’s Teams

Children’s Teams are one part of the current Oranga Tamariki early intervention system. The development of the future early intervention system will take time, and it’s important that tamariki and whānau receive the support they need while this happens.

Recent evaluations of the Children’s Teams have told us what is working well and what could be improved. In response, we will be gradually shifting the Children’s Teams to new, community-based approaches as these are developed. In the interim it will be business as usual for Children’s Teams which will continue to need the support of partner agencies and NGOs.

From 29 November 2019, Turanga Health commenced delivery of the coordination of services for children at risk of harm in Tairawhiti. The remaining nine Children’s Teams are currently at different levels of transition discussion with all teams expected to transition by 30 June 2021.

Information for families

Children's Teams work with tamariki and whānau to bring together services from across agencies, organisations and communities to get them the support they need. The teams are voluntary. We only work with you if you agree to it, and you can withdraw at any time.

Being referred to a Children’s Team

We look at your circumstances and decide whether the Children’s Team is the best option for you and your whānau. If not, we'll talk to you about a referral to another agency or organisation.

What happens if I agree to work with a Children’s Team?

The team assign your child with a lead professional. They're the main point of contact for you, your child and your whānau. They'll sit down with you to talk, and together you'll develop a plan that will help everyone focus on the needs of your child.

We'll also bring the right people and right services together, including health, education, welfare, housing, social services, iwi, cultural and community support – and help you make sure the plan happens.

Will the Children’s Team work with other agencies?

We build the best team possible to help your child. Some of the people who have been in contact with you before may be invited to join the team, so we can all work using the one plan of action.

Sharing your information

We respect your information, and will make sure it's protected and only given to the right people. 

We only share your information if we think it will help your child, and then only with agencies and organisations you and your family and whānau agree to.

Sometimes, the law says we have to share information about you or your family or whānau. If this happens you have the right to ask how and why we've given your information to others.

Mother child and social worker

We always respect your information

What type of personal information can be shared?

We'll only collect and share information about you and your child that we really need. This could include:

  • school attendance records
  • school reports
  • involvement with alternative learning services
  • medical and health information like personal health records
  • information about your appointments with GPs, immunisation details, prescriptions, gateway assessments and Plunket client records.


What if I want to see my information?

You have the right to ask for any personal information we hold about you – ask your lead professional for a copy of your information. You can also ask for corrections to be made if you think the information isn't right.

What if I have concerns or want to stop working with the Children’s Team?

We take your concerns very seriously. If you have any issues, first talk to your lead professional. If you don't want to talk to them for any reason, ask to talk to the Children’s Team coordinator.


Remember, you can withdraw at any time.

Compliments, Complaints and Suggestions

We're keen to hear about your experience with us. Do you have any ideas about how we can improve our service?

Give us feedback