'It's okay!' Manurewa Marae CEO on Covid-19 vaccine

By D'Angelo Martin

The first marae-based and Māori-led vaccination centre began its services this morning at Manurewa Marae in South Auckland.

Manurewa Marae chief executive Natasha Kemp was one of the first people to be vaccinated this morning and encourages people in her community to do the same.

“It’s okay. For me, I want to make sure I get the vaccination.

“It's really important, not only for myself but for our kuia and koroua who are here this morning to get the vaccination."

Manurewa Marae has been working to helped combat Covid-19 ever since the first lockdown over a year ago, providing food and care packages to the community among other services. So Kemp feels it’s only fitting that the first marae-based vaccination centre is on its home grounf.

“We’ve been an essential service, we’ve been out here doing the mahi, and this is the next part of that step of being able to combat Covid-19 for us in our community."

Kemp says kaumatua and those already with underlying health conditions will have priority and will be among the first to be booked in for their vaccination says kemp.