Heke Rongoā

Diploma in Māori Holistic Wellbeing

Ko au te rongoā, ko te rongoā ko au. Awaken your spirit to the world
of rongoā as you bring together dimensions of wairua (spirit) and rongoā rākau (native herbal preparations).

Steeped in matāuranga Maōri, this one year programme will introduce you to the origins of rongoā including restorative practises of the body, mind and soul.  Drawing on pūrākau and the origins of whakapapa you will gain an understanding of where we stand in relation to our natural environment and the foundations of safe, ethical practice. Learn how to gather, prepare and apply a variety of preparations and resources, and gain knowledge on relevant policy and legislation relevant to rongoā. Be prepared to take an in-depth look at yourself; combined with iwi and hapū and reo studies you will be equipped for further advanced study in the health sector, or be able to develop preparations for yourself or whānau.

If you are seeking to become a practitioner of traditional and contemporary Māori holistic wellbeing for whānau, hapū and iwi, this tohu will help you get started.

Download the digital flyer pdf Heke Rongoa.

Heke Rongoā

Diploma in Māori Holistic Wellbeing

Code: HR
Credits: 120
1 year
Level: NZQA Level 5
 Residential seminars, self directed learning and online delivery
Location: Ōtaki Campus, Manukau Site
Mode: Bilingual (Māori/English)
Next Intake: Huringa 1 (14 March 2022)
Entry Requirements: Minimum age of 17 years. Regular internet access, email address and computer or laptop with a working mic and camera are required.
Tuition Fees: $3,528 (approximately)



  • Year One

    HRNA101 Introduction to Rongoā
    HRNA102 Te Whare Oranga: House of Wellbeing
    HRNA103 Rongoā Application
    HRNA104 Ngā Rākau Rongoā


    IWI101 Private Study of One Marae
    IWI102 Private Study of Iwi History


    REO101 Hui Rumaki Reo 1
    REO102 Hui Rumaki Reo 2



Ōtaki Campus Manukau Site
Please contact your course administrator (Kara Doyle, ext 730) for details. Please contact your course administrator (Lyndelle Paniora, 09 262 3614) for details.


After Graduation

Ka puta te ihu

  • Rongoā Practitioner
  • Rongoā Advisor
  • Whānau, Hapū and Iwi Health Promoter
  • Natural Health Therapist

Past Graduate

He paetahi


Awhina Henry
Ko Hikurangi te maunga 
Ko Waiapu te awa 
Ko Ngāti Porou te iwi 
Heke Rongoā


Awhina Henry received a Heke Rongoā flyer in her mailbox one day and she knew it was what she wanted to do. “My mum named me Awhina and that means to help or to care for someone. Helping people is something I’ve loved to do, I’ve always wanted to do that my whole life and it brings me a sense of purpose. I wanted to find an outlet for this,” says Awhi, as she is known by. She’s always loved to be in the ngahere, surrounded by nature and rākau. Her connection to the taiao is what helped her find a passion for Rongoā. 

“We are really connected to our rākau, they’re engrained into our whakapapa as Māori. This connection that we have with them is really important.”  

had been practicing Rongoā for about four years prior to the course, making kawakawa balms and oils for close friends and whānau. “I already had some mātauranga about plants but it was good to have some guidance from my kaiako”. The kaiako taught her about tikanga, kaitiakitanga, wairuatanga, and how this is applied to rongoā. One important aspect that Awhi took from this qualification was wairuatanga which she now applies to her everyday work.

Te Wānanga o Raukawa, for Awhi, was different from other institutions because it reminded her of how she grew up on the East Coast in te ao Māori. “Because of how I grew up it was easy to fit in and easy to understand... I love the environment, I love how everyone is whānau.” 

Awhi recommends this tohu to anyone wanting to open up their wairuatanga or wanting to know more about te ao Māori in general. “It’s important when you’re doing rongoā to know the basics of karakia, tikanga, and the origins of rongoā, which is what I took away from this.” One thing she wants people to know about rongoā is that it’s a lot more than simply making products, there is a lot of wairuatanga involved.

We are really connected to our rākau, they’re ingrained into our whakapapa as Māori. This connection that we have with them is really important.”  

 Awhi now runs her own Rongoā business, Awhi Ora Rongoā 

Whatungarongaro te tangata toitū te whenua!