'His determination is really inspiring' - brave Gisborne teen shares story of being badly burned as a youngster

Every week in New Zealand five children are burned badly enough they are hospitalised.

One such victim is Gisborne Boys’ High student Matthew Nom, who was badly burned after he threw petrol on a fire as a child.

He was so severely burned surgeons did not think he would pull through.

Matthew told his story to TVNZ 1's Marae.

“I’m sharing my story because I want people to know that it wasn’t easy for me to get through trials, but other people can,” Matthew told the programme.

Matthew hasn’t always been open about his accident, which left his body scarred.

“I’m self-conscious, but when I’m at home I’m okay wearing shorts and stuff.”

Most children who are seriously burned are burned at home by scalding water, hot drinks or fire.

Five children aged under 15 die every year from their burns.

The often traumatic experience has a profound effect on the victim and their families.

Matthew’s mother Hineari Nom says she remembers the day the ambulance came to pick up her son after his accident.

“There’s not many ways to describe what that looks like, feels like, and even smells like.

“It’s not something I like to revisit.”

Despite his accident, Ms Nom says her son is moving on with his life.

“He’s still pulling pranks on people and playing with his mates.

“His determination is really inspiring.”

Original story by Marae reporter Hikurangi Jackson


Jacinda Ardern won't follow Kate Middleton in leaving hospital hours after giving birth

Jacinda Ardern says she's lowering public expectations that she’ll leave hospital just hours after giving birth and look as composed as the Duchess of Cambridge did today.

Kate Middleton left hospital in London with her new baby boy and alongside husband Prince William seven hours after his arrival.

The Prime Minister said New Zealand will be sending several gifts to Prince William and Kate. Source: Breakfast

The Prime Minister, who's due to have her first child in June, says when she saw the photo of the Duchess outside hospital she counted back how many hours it had been since she had given birth.

"And I have made sure in all of my interviews since then I have lowered any expectation I will be doing the same or that I will look quite as well composed as she did," Ms Ardern told reporters this afternoon.

Speaking at her first post-Cabinet news conference since returning from her European tour, Ms Ardern also said she hopes New Zealand’s gifts to the new royal baby make it through the pack of gifts the royals will be overwhelmed with from across the globe.

"I have heard that there is a real love of New Zealand children's books in the family. And equally the blanket that's been sent is particularly special. It's beautiful, I've seen it and it, it’s hand crafted. And of course the little romper I'm hoping might get some use. No guarantees," she said.

Meanwhile Ms Ardern says she got some advice today that she should have no trouble flying right up until the day that she's due "and that's my intention". 

She added she had to get clearance to travel to Europe, but she has no further overseas trips planned before having her baby.

The Prime Minister says she's also lowering expectations she'll look as well composed and the Duchess of Cambridge did. Source: 1 NEWS


Government locks in $1.1m over four years for RSA and charity to help veterans with post-traumatic stress

The Government is guaranteeing $1.1 million over the next four years for the RSA and No Duff Charitable Trust to help fund their mental health support services for veterans.

Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern and Minister for Veterans Ron Mark have announced the funding on the eve of Anzac Day.

The funding will see $250,000 going to the Returned and Services Association and $25,000 to No Duff annually.

Mr Mark says New Zealand now has around 41,000 veterans, around 30,000 of those are contemporary veterans from conflicts such as Vietnam, East Timor and Afghanistan. 

"We’re seeing cases of Post-Traumatic Stress Injury, and many of our younger men and women are returning from operational service in need of help," he said. 

The RSA has worked hard to modernise its services to meet this emerging need, he said. 

"They are a great example of an organisation which has evolved and they are wonderful advocates for veterans."  

Alongside them, No Duff have become valued and trusted first responders, Mr Mark said.  

"They've been there for many of our people in need and their reputation only grows by the day."

Mr Mark says he's focused on ensuring we have the right support in place for service people when they come back from operations.  

"Today’' announcement is a small part of the overall picture, but it’s significant. 

"It shows this Government is concerned about the health and wellbeing of all New Zealanders, but it acknowledges veterans have some complex issues which may need more specialist support services.  It's heart-warming to see organisations such as the RSA and No Duff stepping up and making a difference," the Minister said. 

The Queen had approved four medals for gallantry under fire in Afghanistan and South Sudan.
Source: 1 NEWS