Congratulations to BCAC Committee member Maria Marama, who has just received a Masters Scholarship from the Māori Cancer Researcher Awards scheme run by the Cancer Society (Te Kāhui Matepukupuku o Aotearoa) and Hei Āhuru Mōwai (Māori Cancer Leadership Aotearoa). 

Maria (Ngāti Whakaue, Tūhourangi) will explore the integration of traditional and complementary approaches to cancer care within conventional breast cancer treatment for wāhine Māori. She will use a Kaupapa Māori research approach to identify potential benefits and challenges for wāhine Māori. Maria’s research will be informed by her lived experience as a breast cancer patient and her passion for advocating for better outcomes for Māori across the healthcare system. 

Maria hopes that her research will add to the critical discourse on the development of culturally responsive, rights-based, and evidence-informed strategies in breast cancer care that leverage better outcomes for Māori communities. Maria believes that such research is crucial to achieving equitable breast cancer care for Māori in Aotearoa.

‘We are so pleased that Maria has won this award’ says BCAC Chair Libby Burgess. ‘Māori women are more likely to get breast cancer and have poorer survival rates than non-Māori. Any research that can find ways to help wāhine Māori to get the care they need is incredibly important.’

Maria will be hosted by Pūrangakura, an independent Kaupapa Māori research centre based in Tāmaki Makaurau/Auckland.

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