Everyone was the same

This week we made a convoy trip to Kaikōura: Te Pūtahitanga o Te Waipounamu; Whānau Ora Navigators; Mel Tainui, Whānau Ora Coach; Linda Ngata – our Whānau Connector; Te Puni Kōkiri; the Community Law Centre; the very distinguished Professor Regan Potangaroa from Victoria University (our specialist technical advisor on disaster recovery) and Pio Terei.

Of course in that fine list, the only one the tamariki were interested in was the last name: “I’ve seen him on TV!”.  “Hey, that’s the fishing guy”.  No matter how much we tried, there was only one celebrity in our team – and the kids made it known their preference!

Our team wanted to hear for ourselves, the myriad of challenges post-earthquake, and start a conversation about what could be done to address these issues.

Everything is changed, the contour of the land, the colour of the rocks on the beach, the human landscape that stretches out in front of the whānau.  On the rocky shore the rotting seaweed has left the pebbles to be bleached white under the light of the sun.   That’s easy to see at a glance.


But what the two Kāhu sisters told us was that while the seabed rose up before them, their beloved maunga also fell away, crumbling in big balls of dust.  They asked the question: how far forward has our maunga moved?   Their intimate connections to the whenua were evident: how can families last during winter when there has been a nine month rahui imposed on their kāpata kai? What is the impact on medicinal plants like kawakawa, what do we do when the bush is dying?


Rebecca Manawatu, Riria Allen, Ata Kāhu and Celeste Harnett

Rebecca Manawatu, Riria Allen, Ata Kāhu and Celeste Harnett


A statement we heard a lot was that in the first couple of weeks after the earthquake,
“everyone was the same”.   It was a statement expressed with enthusiasm – the great levelers of income, housing, background, culture were removed under the impact of the earthquakes.   For local councilor, Celeste Harnett, she reflected that the spirit of togetherness that everyone experienced in the first waves of the disaster, could be a basis to return to, in the evolution of the recovery period.   “Mahi tahi, mahi ora”.



We had a very constructive hui with the Kaikōura District Council, discussing what we might all do to help ensure opportunities for whānau to access the support they need.   As a result of home assessments, 37 buildings have been ‘red-stickered’; 32 of those buildings are family homes.  Another 247 have been yellow-stickered’.  

[Yellow means restricted use - parts may be off limits and people should enter only on urgent business and leave as soon as possible. Red means unsafe: do not enter.]


Celeste proudly gave the meaning to the taonga created by Eruera Solomon, as a powerful symbol of the relationships that the Council must have with mana whenua, with environmental bodies, with the institutions of mātauranga that provide the backbone to the shield of protection all whānau are entitled to receive.   Each of the floors is graced with a different aspect of the design; creating altogether a coherent whole.



One of the wonderful moments in the day was the session with Pio on awesome parenting up at Takahanga Marae.  He talked about how to nurture all our rangatahi so that they live up to the aspiration of ‘rangatira in the making’.   He had some simple phrases to stop and make you think.   “Strike while the iron is cold”, that is, don’t sweat the small stuff, allow you both to cool down before you have the difficult conversation.   After all, “why bring clouds into the whare?”



Introduction of new Navigator Coordinator


This week we welcomed into Te Pūtahitanga o Te Waipounamu our new Navigator Coordinator, Pari Hunt.  We are delighted to welcome Pari in to support Maire in her role as Navigator – Team Leader – as well as the wider team within Te Pūtahitanga o Te Waipounamu.  Pari comes with a wealth of experience.  He has been a Senior Intelligence Analyst for the NZ Customs service; a training manager for the United Nations in East Timor (UNTAET); a national alcohol / drug / violence provider and prison officer for the New Zealand Department of Corrections and most recently a Whānau Navigator for He Waka Tapu Trust.


Pari Deacon Hunt sharing a first day joke with our office manager, Juli Tyler

Pari Deacon Hunt sharing a first day joke with our office manager, Juli Tyler



It is also a great opportunity to announce that Gina-Lee Duncan has been appointed at the Contracts Advisor for Te Tauihu-Te Tai Poutini.   Gina (of the paradise also known as Koukourarata) of course is no stranger to Te Pūtahitanga o Te Waipounamu.   In September 2015 she was appointed a contract advisor for Te Hā o Kawatiri – based in Westport.   She has been working in collaboration with the support of Ngāti Waewae and Ngāti Apa ki te Rā Tō, to create social, economic and environmental change in Westport.  


Gina-Lee (in black and white) with Richelle Schaper (in black and white) standing behind our beautiful kuia o Ngāti Apa k te Rā To, Barb Greer.  Also in the photo is Carl Hutchby (Chief Executive of Poutini Waiora); Kathleen Gavighan (Manager of the Buller District Health Board) with other staff from Poutini Waiora and members of Te Ha o Kawatiri.  You can also spot Matua Ned Tauwhare at the very centre back of the photo.

Gina-Lee (in black and white) with Richelle Schaper (in black and white) standing behind our beautiful kuia o Ngāti Apa k te Rā To, Barb Greer.  Also in the photo is Carl Hutchby (Chief Executive of Poutini Waiora); Kathleen Gavighan (Manager of the Buller District Health Board) with other staff from Poutini Waiora and members of Te Ha o Kawatiri.  You can also spot Matua Ned Tauwhare at the very centre back of the photo.


Prior to Te Hā o Kawatiri, Gina-Lee was a youth events coordinator for Buller REAP (rural education adult programmes); marae management in Koukourarata rūnanga; a case manager for Work and Income and qualified chef and front of house manager.   Gina was not able to be with us at her own whakatau because it coincided with the pōwhiri for the new Whānau Ora Navigator for Te Ha o Kawatiri, Richelle Schaper.   The Navigator role will be supported by Poutini Waiora under the context of Te Ha o Kawatiri.

Monitoring and Measuring

This week, Te Pūtahitanga o Te Waipounamu caught up with the Monitoring and Evaluation team from Te Puni Kokiri : Nicola Grace, Hazel Kale and Nathaniel Pihama.   It wā a good opportunity to discuss RBA, outcome measures, what does Whānau Ora mean to us all?

In that light, it makes great sense for us to not just be collecting data, but to know what to do with it!   A primary focus for the Data Analyst is the interpretation of trends utilising the Results Based Accountability framework, aggregated scorecards and the ecosystem-level indicators.   Te Pūtahitanga o Te Waipounamu has supported whānau entities to collect robust subjective and objective contractual performance datasets and is constantly seeking to improve performance. The Data Analyst will have a key role in both monitoring and interpreting performance, and identifying means of improvement.

The successful candidate will have:

  • At least 2 years' experience in the Data Analyst field

  • A relevant Tertiary qualification

  • High level competency in excel reporting

  • Extensive knowledge of business planning and reporting

Additionally, this role will require someone with excellent interpersonal and communication skills, coupled with a high level of professionalism to support the initiatives of this significant, whānau focused organisation.


Mana Rangatahi in the House

This week the passion was pumping, the energy was rising to the heavens, as Ngāti Apa ki te Rā To Mana Rangatahi graduated at Omaka Marae in Blenheim.  It’s been a busy time for Omaka.  First the hosting of the Iwi Leaders throughout Aotearoa at the start of December, the launch of their organic project, Manaaki, and of course the birth of the beautiful new baby to Donna and Kiley, Kamehameha – a precious gift from the atua.


Mana Rangatahi seems an absolute blast: during the wānanga the crew welcomed the Ahorangi whānau on to the marae; spent time up at Te Āwhina Marae in Motueka, did some training at Tahunanui, waka ama into Able Tasman, spent an amazing time at Kaiteriteri with Todd and Leeann Jago and the whānau; visited Tumatakokiri, an old Ngāti Apa pa site, ending up with some paddle boarding.   Makes me envious just to write!   There is nothing as exciting as reading the reflections of whānau who are buzzing with the growth of their children who have returned home stronger, bolder, and speaking more reo, connected to the essence of who they are.



Some people have all the luck!  Hot on the heels of the amazing Mana Rangatahi, Te Rā Morris, our contracts advisor for Waikawa, Wairau, Kaikōura and the East Coast – travelled over to Wharekauri with Commissioning Manager, Maania Farrar.  In a whirlwind couple of days on the island they spent time with as many people as they could, catching up with the developments and signing off our contract for a new Whānau Ora Navigator role.  Pictured here, celebrating the progress is Te Rā and Maania with Gail Amaru and John Kamo.



The barren beauty of Wharekauri / Rekoku / Chatham Islands is breath-taking.   I remember running on the coast road, with just a few cows for company, and feeling as that this was truly good for the soul – the wildness of the winds, the ocean stretching out beyond the eye’s reach, and the wholesome peace that comes with that.


We are indebted to these communities who welcome us so warmly into their embrace, who allow us time to listen, to connect, to smell the sea breeze and feel the warmth.  


Rena May sharing her love of the landscape.

Rena May sharing her love of the landscape.


It was great to meet with Dale Whaitiri, new Chairperson of Ha O Te Ora O Wharekauri.


What’s happening next week?


ko aotearoa tēnei: claims concerning nz law and

policy affecting māori culture and identity


As part of the 2017 Waitangi Day commemorations, Ratonga Māori and ngā Kaiāwhina of the Christchurch City Libraries are pleased to host a presentation by Sacha McMeeking (Kāi Tahu), Head of School, Aotahi – Māori and Pacific Indigenous Studies regarding the WAI262 claim.


More commonly known as the “flora & fauna claim” or the “intellectual property rights claim”; it was significant in that it was not only the first “whole-government” inquiry. But also the first inquiry to specifically address the Treaty relationship beyond the settlement of historical grievances.


This 30 minute presentation will help provide some insight into not only the reason for the lodging of the Claim, but also the implications of the findings of the Waitangi Tribunal.


when:       Thursday 2nd February 2017

from:        6 to 7pm

where:      linwood library, eastgate

free entry


Earthquake Information Forums

EQC, Insurance companies and geotechnical engineers, Tonkin and Taylor will give an update on their work and answer questions on land, building and contents claims:

  • Tuesday 31 January, 6-7.30pm; Ward Community Hall

  • Wednesday 1 February, 6-7.30pm; Waiau Community Hall

  • Thursday 2 Feb, 1-2.30pm and 6-7.30pm: Kaikōura Memorial Hall