Closing out 2020 and looking ahead to what 2021 will bring…

“Wherever there is change, and wherever there is uncertainty… there is opportunity.” – Mark Cuban

As we near the end of 2020, we look back over a year where the unexpected has nudged (well, some would say pushed) us to reflect on our collective health and wellbeing and to make sacrifices to protect ourselves, our whānau and our communities.

It is a year that has challenged us to change and adapt at pace and break down some of the barriers we once perceived unmoveable, to uncover new ways to meet the needs of tāngata whai ora. 2020 is a year many people across Aotearoa may be eager to put behind them. However, it is worth pausing to reflect on what our 2020 experiences have taught us. For the KPI Programme, what we have noticed most prominently is our sector’s ‘character’. Our ability to persevere in the face of adversity and put aside fear to continuously deliver mental health and addiction services when they are needed most. To keep finding the energy to connect with others who share a collective aspiration for striving to do better… for improving our services so they can achieve better wellbeing outcomes for everyone.

This character shone through in our November 2020 stream forums where almost 100 people from across Aotearoa took the opportunity to meet via Zoom to examine how our national mental health and addiction data collection has reflected our 2020 service delivery story and learn from the voices of rangatahi, tāngata whai ora, whānau and each other. We will spend more time in our next issue of The Indicator showcasing content from these forums. However, we did not want to miss this moment to acknowledge everyone who made the space to attend and contribute to our November forums. The useful and meaningful korero was a true reflection of your tenacity and ability to sustain progress and momentum through uncertainty.

Although there remains a significant amount of Programme mahi underway, we have deliberately chosen to keep this issue of The Indicator brief with just a couple of updates to get you excited about the new year. Mostly, we wanted to extend our gratitude to every person who has contributed to and supported the KPI Programme in 2020. Together we have navigated new technologies, explored new territories, and collaborated to achieve new milestones. Despite the pandemic and its restrictions, we have worked together to strengthen our connections and share learning and expertise so that the KPI Programme is well-positioned to keep growing in 2021.