Te Ura o te Kowhai

Life is full on this week. Just like the radiant blooms of the kowhai, our tamariki are flourishing through the amazing mahi of the eight kura who are part of Te Reo Matatini me te pangarau. We have three fabulous wahine toa making their way to Rotorua for the Māori Women’s Business event of the year : Janice Lee; Lee-anne Jago and Cate Grace. Ngati Koata is trampling the land int heir initiative, Takahia te Whenua and there’s a whole lot of excitement happening with wananga, pamper events and Te Pataka o Wairau night market.

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Standing out in the cold

This week we have been travelling between Nelson and Greymouth, listening to the stories of whānau as they share their experiences about the impacts of care for their children, whether it be in the care of whānau or the care of the state.

 

We also go to both ends of Te Waipounamu to pay a visit to Koha Kai in Invercargill and the Ngati Koata initiative, Takahia te Whenua ki Whangarae

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Finding our Path

This week we have heard some harrowing stories around Te Waipounamu, stories of the injustices we do to one another. Yet in the shadow of words that bite at the soul, the courage, the resilience and the determination to overcome has been inspiring. So too, such beautiful landscapes from Daffodil Bay in the South to Punakaiki on the West, to the exquisite wonder of the Moeraki boulders heading North. That is all the rongoa we need.

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Sailing my Ship 

This week it’s all about the stars. Madison Henry shared with us his voyage on the waka hourua where the navigation was by focusing on one particular star; the swell of the waves or the flow of the wind. We were literally dancing with the stars at the Westpac Canterbury Business Champion awards where our very own Anton Matthews was awarded Emerging Leader of the year! Have a read....

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The Visible and the Invisible : The power of Voice

In a wananga held by the Haitana Whanau Trust as part of our Wave Seven investments, one of the adult participants reflected on the wananga as being the first time that she had experienced joy. It made me stop and think hard, about what that would be like. Not to have known joy through the years of childhood, when falling into a pile of autumn leaves or chasing waves in a feisty sea should be the rights of passage of growing up. This week, we share the joy of Whānau Ora entities in Te Tauihu sharing their initiatives; the courage of men on the Chathams coming together to talk about health; and an exciting new book, launched in te wiki o te reo Māori. Karawhiua!

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The Circle of Life

One of our girls’ favourite childhood movies was the Lion King, and in particular the theme, ‘the circle of life’.   The words still echo in my head: ‘it’s the circle of life and it moves us all, through despair and hope, through faith and love, till we find our place on the path unwinding, in the circle, the circle of life’.

 

This week, in the wake of such sadness over recent losses it has been restorative to feel wrapped up in the inspiration and excitement of whanau attending the Wave Ten Whānau Ora workshops throughout Te Waipounamu.  Have a read……

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When Great Trees Fall

At a time of great sadness we might say “kua hinga te kauri o te wao nui a Tāne” (the kauri has fallen in the sacred forest of Tāne). 

Sometimes that sacred forest appears to be filling too fast – with rākau of many descriptions: the towering Totara, reaching upwards to the sky; the tenacious Ti Kouka; spiky and aloof; the heart-shaped leaves of a flourishing kawakawa; the baby young shoots of delicate nikau.

 This week as we grieve the loss of loved ones, our thoughts have been focused also on the horrendous profile associated with suicide.  Our attention has also been turned to the challenging circumstances of whanau living  on the street, ‘couch-surfing’ or in over-crowded conditions.

 Which rākau do we mourn the most?   The answer of course is all of them. 

We must ask questions of ourselves – look for the healing within – and always remember, like the bright hope of an impertinent daffodil, to cherish the moments that lead to laughter, hold tight to those we love, and to be kind to ourselves and others.

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The River Flows

This week our river of aspiration flows through Hurunui and Kaikoura; to Murihiku and Wairau, and is heading fast towards Hokonui and Otepoti. We announce a new Tu Pono Connector role in the Wairau; we celebrate the nomination of Anton Matthews of FUSH; and we share the excitement of the Kai Kart for Koha Kai.

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Be Responsible for your energy

This week we farewelled one of our team, Maania Farrar, requoting an inspirational phrase from Oprah Winfrey that Maania often cited:  “Be responsible for the energy you bring into the room”.   It was a phrase that appealed to us both – take a focused effort to ensuring you project the image you want to.

 

It resonated with our memories of two beautiful men who left us this week _ George Waitai Tikao and Matua Pere Tainui.   This week our blog pays special homage to Ōnuku.

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Transformation of one’s life direction; transformation of attitudes, of behaviours of practice.

Rangatahi are leading our nation forward – whether in standing up for their rights at Ihumatao; reclaiming the essence of who they are with Te Ara Whakatipu; using their voice to full effect at Ngā Manu Kōrero; or celebrating the warrior within in the 10th year of the mana rangatahi wānanga of Ngāti Apa ki te rā to. This week takes a look at our amazing young leaders from a far south as Colac Bay right up to Te Tauihu.

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Finding your sacred intent

The power of karakia can carry messages from afar to help strengthen our purpose. This week we share in the collective mission to support the indigenous people in Hawai’i in protecting their sacred maunga. We spend tine with theNav Nation in training; and we share some of the exciting achievements of eight kura across Te Waipounamu advancing literacy and numeracy.

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The Pebble in your shoe

Sometimes we are so focused on our phones, that we completely overlook the spectacular landscape we are travelling through. A break in connectivity suddenly causes us to pause and reflect at the majesty outside. We need both. To focus on the daily grind, but to always remember the purpose – the attainment of Mokopuna Ora –everyone’s chance to shine in the radiance of the rainbow. This week’s blog travels the road with Kahukura Pounamu, Mokopuna Ora, and Kura Reo.

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Cutting through the wire

What a week we have had. A former Governor General; the Prime Minister; a roll-call of Ministers and some energetic new kaimahi! Meanwhile at the tope of the South, Ariki Creative was rolling out a marketing/comms / branding wānanga to ensure all our whānau-based enterprises in Whakatū, Wairau and Waikawa are promoting their messages in the strongest means possible. It feels like the new year has well and truly begun.

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Te Maingo o Hiwaiterangi

Next Wednesday 3 July, between 10am-2pm, a kaumātua Healthy Day and Matariki lunch is being held at Leeston Memorial Hall.

Taumutu is hosting a fabulous feast – and Tuahiwi Marae is getting into it by putting on a bus to travel out for the day.  The riding instructions are pretty clear:  “wear your pretties, sort your wig, and bring your makeup and lippy”.

 

That’s what the spirit of Matariki is all about – celebrating in style, feasting together, reflecting on loved ones gone and planting the seeds of hope for tomorrow.    Have a look at our Matariki/Puanga edition of the blog.

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This is my life, this is my breath

Graphic design and marketing.   Reading the stars and Matariki hākari.   Annual hui to do futures planning; dancing the night away; and supporting whānau to be the best carers they can for their tamariki mokopuna.   All of these topics are covered in this week’s blog.

 

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The reflection of perfection

Everyone this week has a view about ‘Oranga Tamariki’ the organisation; and ‘oranga tamariki’ – the desired state of wellbeing we seek for all children of Aotearoa.  There is a growing list of concerns about the behaviours and attitudes of the various parties who are heavily ‘hands-on’ in the interventions that occur in the context of state care; and an equally strong call from whānau that the state should be ‘hands off’ and provide a space instead for whānau to flourish, for children to be nurtured within the context of their own.  This week we look at some hui that are occurring around this issue, as well as congratulate two of our own Matariki stars: FUSH and the Ōtautahi Co-lab.

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Kia ao ake te rā, he tio, he keo, he hauhunga

Aunty Kiwa’s instructions are always clear and often to the point – “Never close the door.   Keep talking.   Work hard.  Nurture and support the next generation.   Stand together.   Wear a rubber.  Keep moving forward.  No matter what happens, no matter how ugly it gets, aroha, aroha, aroha.

 This week we share the highlights of a beautiful reception held to honour Mereana Mokikiwa Hutchen, as well as introduce some upcoming hui for caregivers in Motueka and Nelson.

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