"Under Oranga Whanau, groups of three kuia will visit pregnant Maori women to identify welfare issues."help, support community - it is the only way to make a difference.
"Under the scheme, the three "nannies" will work in a team visiting mothers in their regions. Dr Sharples said it followed a smaller trial that iwi in Ngati Kahungunu undertook this year.
The "nanny principle" puts into practice the cultural way older people relate to younger people in the same non-threatening way that Maori wardens work.
"It works really well. One puts the kettle on, one natters about the whakapapa, the other one cuts the cake," the minister said."Brilliant! This is an innovative initiative that uses lessons from our history and past and incorporates them into our society today - I love it!!!
"Nga Pae o te Maramamatanga, the Maori Centre of Research Excellence, organised the symposium.One of the best things about this initiative is that it is maori helping maori in the maori way.
Sociologist Dr Tracey McIntosh called for researchers to re-evaluate what impact their research had in terms of changing behaviours and negative social indices.
Researchers needed to move towards using research models which didn't view Maori as victims and a recognition that gang, domestic and other forms of violence weren't isolated to Maori in New Zealand.
"Violence is a national and international problem but it is our problem," said Dr McIntosh. "We must own it."
"It is a catch-all - it's an opportunity to help people before issues become issues."