Tū Pono: Whānau Ora Campaign Comes to Waikawa Marae
Tū Pono ki Te Tau Ihu community project team has called a hui at Waikawa Marae on Wednesday 28 November at 3.30pm to support local whānau in their efforts to eliminate violence.
Commencing in 2016 at Te Hora Marae in Canvastown, this builds on a series of five hui held across Te Tau Ihu; and 22 hui across the South Island. Other hui in the top of the South have been held at Te Āwhina Marae in Motueka, Whakatū Marae in Nelson and Omaka Pa in Blenheim.
A feature of these hui has been presentations by Tā Mark Solomon former Kaiwhakahaere of Ngāi Tahu and Dame Hon Tariana Turia former Minister for Whānau Ora.
Dr Richard Hunter project manager for Tū Pono ki Te Tauihu o Te Waka a Māui says “the aim of the Tū Pono approach is to dispel the notion that violence and all forms of harmful behaviour within whānau should be accepted as normal or traditional Māori behaviour.”
“Having the support of nationally respected leaders such as Tā Mark and Whaea Tariana gives whānau the confidence that our iwi leaders are promoting the changes in behaviour needed to protect our mothers and children” he added.
This desire to challenge the normalisation of violence within whānau led to the development of Tū Pono: Te Mana Kaha o te Whānau. Designed and led by whānau, the approach has gained momentum in Te Waipounamu through support from Whānau Ora commissioning agency Te Pūtahitanga o Te Waipounamu who work with key influencers within whānau and communities to lead the campaign.
“We must be the solutions we need for the challenges that face us. Tū Pono: Te Mana Kaha o te Whānau is about us and our collective knowledge, strength and power. Together we create the wave of change.” stated Helen Leahy, Pouarahi / Chief Executive of Te Pūtahitanga o Te Waipounamu.
The objective of Tū Pono is to create safe places and safe spaces for whānau to strategise ways to eliminate family violence at a local level.
“By engaging at a local level the hope is that we’re able to develop authentic and trusting relationships where we can have the hard conversations. Ultimately Tū Pono is about dispelling any illusions that violence is acceptable – our message is that it never was acceptable and it never will be” says Dr Hunter.
Whānau hui have been carried out all over the South Island introducing whānau, hapū and iwi to the Tū Pono strategy which is aimed at creating inter-generational change to empower whānau to be in a position where they can make changes.
The kuia, Mereana Moki Kiwa Hutchen (Aunty Kiwa) has played a huge role in the development of the Tū Pono strategy and has said that “Māori should never accept violence as we come from rangatira and are a noble people, we have rich solutions within our culture, our reo, our waiata, our whakataukī. We are the living breath of our tūpuna".