Iwi Social and Community Services


We have reviewed our current standards and processes for accrediting iwi.

As a result we are making changes to the way we accredit iwi social services.

Under the new process iwi organisations can be accredited at a level appropriate to the services they deliver, while still maintaining their iwi-mandated status.

Iwi organisations providing care will be assessed against:

  • Level 1 Social Sector Accreditation Standards
  • MSD Specialist Standard: Iwi Social Service
  • Any other relevant specialist standards required by MSD

Iwi organisations not providing care will be assessed against:

  • Level 2,3 or 4 Social Sector Accreditation Standards
  • MSD Specialist Standard: Iwi Community Service
  • Any other relevant standards required by MSD

Both specialist standards have been developed to include iwi-specific requirements not covered by the Social Sector Accreditation Standards.

You may notice a new look and feel to the standards (and to your reports) – but the intent and purpose will remain the same.

Why are there changes?

This is part of wider work to introduce consistent standards – called Social Sector Accreditation Standards – which are recognised by a number of government funders and used in cross-government accreditation processes.

We want to make sure that there are appropriate accreditation options for mandated iwi organisations.

We are working to ensure levels of compliance match the level of risk associated with the types of services actually provided.

This means organisations will be assessed against fit-for-purpose standards.

What are the benefits?

Iwi organisations can maintain their iwi mandate to deliver services with or without care being part of the organisation’s service delivery.

Iwi organisations can choose which level of services they provide for iwi, hapu and whānau and be assessed at a level appropriate to those services.

This means iwi organisations providing care can be confident they are meeting robust and appropriate standards, while those providing lower risk services avoid assessment at an unnecessarily high level.

The use of Social Sector Accreditation Standards also supports the exploration of cross-government accreditation processes, which aim to reduce duplication and compliance for providers when they are working with more than one government agency to deliver social services.

When will these be implemented?

If you are an existing iwi social service, you will be assessed using the new process at your next review.

At the time of your assessment, you will have the opportunity to discuss your options and decide which specialist standard best meets your needs.

The roll-out of the new standards will not affect your current approval status.

How can you find out more?

If you have questions or concerns at any time, you can talk to a member of your regional MSD Approvals team or email us at:

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