Whanaungatanga important in life satisfaction for Māori

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A new report from Statistics New Zealand shows that 4 out of 5 Māori are highly satisfied with their lives and that health, relationships, and income are the most important factors contributing to their life satisfaction.

Connection to culture also has a small but significant association with higher life satisfaction: the more important Māori feel it is to be involved with Māori culture, the higher their levels of life satisfaction.

General Social Survey: 2014 results for the general population released last week show that income, relationships, housing, and health are important for well-being.

Ngā tohu o te ora: The determinants of life satisfaction for Māori 2013 show this is also true for the Māori population, but that relationships or whanaungatanga seem to play a stronger role for Māori than they do for other New Zealanders.

[quote_center]“One of the interesting things we found is that Māori with dependent children are more satisfied than those without,” household statistics manager Diane Ramsay said. “This might show the importance of children and whānau in te ao Māori.”[/quote_center]

Māori who report not being lonely are also more likely to be satisfied with their lives, as are those who are in couple relationships.

“There’s some clear evidence from this analysis that relationships are especially important to Māori and their sense of well-being. This information is especially useful for developing policies and initiatives that aim to increase well-being in a way that is suitable for Māori.”

Statistics NZ Tatauranga Aotearoa marks 175 years of the Treaty of Waitangi Te Tiriti o Waitangi with this report and other information for and about Māori and New Zealand nationhood.

New Zealand General Social Survey: 2014

Key facts
  • The majority of New Zealanders rated their overall life satisfaction and sense of purpose highly in 2014.
  • Just over 8 in 10 people reported high levels of overall life satisfaction and almost 9 in 10 felt a sense of purpose in the things they did.
  • Some population groups had lower levels of both overall life satisfaction and sense of purpose: sole parents, unemployed people, and people with no qualifications.
  • Other population groups had notably lower levels of overall life satisfaction but their sense of purpose ratings were still similar to other groups’ – people who didn’t live in families, had incomes of $30,000 and under, needed an extra bedroom in their home, or identified as Māori or Pacific peoples.
  • Age differences had a strong effect on the different well-being rates reported by different population groups.

Graph, self-rated well-being, by scale ratings, April 2014 to March 2015.

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