Persist in the battle and journey for wellbeing.

Heke tipu oranga, he taonga tuku iho, ka pakanga ake, aue te āiotanga, te manawanui.

Persist in the battle and journey for wellbeing.  It is a treasure handed down from the heavens, then comes confidence and peace.


It would be unfair to say I have my head in the clouds.   But sometimes you just can’t help but be fascinated by the glimmer of the early sunrise on the waters, the cluster of cumulus clouds that act as a landscape border to the day ahead.  The sculpture, ‘Cumulus Gate Pavilion for Richard Pearse’ certainly grabbed by attention this morning against a flaming, blazing sunrise.   The sculpture by Gregor Kregar was built to reflect the cluster of cumulus clouds that were so startling as a virtual backdrop.   


Getting out in the great outdoors was the theme of this year’s Mental Health Week.   At 12 oclock the office was in lockdown, all of us evacuated into the chill of a fresh spring day.  We talked to each other.    We walked on the grass.   We did it as a hub – and felt better for it.   The Mental Health Foundation has five simple strategies to achieve wellbeing:

  1. Connect: talk and listen, be there, feel connected.

  2. Give: your time, your words, your presence.

  3. Take Notice: Remember the simple things that give you joy

  4. Keep Learning: embrace new experiences, see opportunities, surprise yourself.

  5. Be Active: do what you can.   Enjoy what you do.  Move your mood.

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Te Ara Raukura

Te Ara Raukura is a partnership between Ngāi Tūāhuriri, Te Tapuae o Rehua, whānau and seven secondary kura in the eastern kura Cluster in Ōtautahi Christchurch. This is a hapū led whānau initiative. It is a collaboration between seven schools in the eastern kura cluster to develop leadership capacity in year nine and ten tauira, positioning whānau as key agents of change.

The aim of the initiative is to leverage whānau through a strengths based, solutions focused philosophy where whānau are building strengthened relationships between home and kura. Each kura will have a directive individual plan but will work collaboratively with each other.

It is a fantastic example of whānau informing design: whānau informing education design on behalf of their whānau.

Have a look at this beautiful video from the wananga in July which captures the essence of Te Ara Raukura.   

The password is Te Tapuae.

Onuku Whānau Day

It was an honour to travel to the home of Ngai Tarewa and Ngati Irakehu to speak at their Onuku Whānau Day.   As we gathered under the craggy peak Ōteauheke, you can’t help but reflect back on the century beyond, when French and German communities arrived to create a new life, thousands of miles away from their birthplace in the lands they called home.

As we know now, the first landings of the French were not so much about creating a community, but more in building an economy.    Approximately sixty French whaling ships were making the regular crossing between France and New Zealand for the lucrative whale trade.   Oil from these beautiful mammals of the sea lit the lamps of Parisian streets.

The commander of one of these ships, Jean Francois Langlois, captured some 45 whales in just less than two years.    Langlois felt that Akaroa would make an excellent French base and on 2nd August 1838, constructed a contract to buy most of Banks Peninsula.  In exchange the twelve Ngai Tahu rangatira whose signatures were obtained, were given two cloaks, six pairs of trousers, twelve hats, two pairs of shoes, some pistols, axes and two shirts.

Two years later, in August 1840, the French returned to Akaroa to instead find a British warship had sailed there just months earlier, and planted the Union Jack.   

And so 179 years later since Langlois’ great dream of a French annexation was conceived and subsequently unrealised, we came together to share conversations and reflections on the relationship between Ngati Wiwi, Ngati Tiamana and mana whenua.

Amber Clarke, kaikaranga leading us into te whare tupuna, Karaweko

Amber Clarke, kaikaranga leading us into te whare tupuna, Karaweko


Tu Pono Te Mana Kaha o Te Whānau

We had a wonderful meeting this week with the collective of kaimahi associated with Tu Pono: Te Mana Kaha o Te Whanau.   Kaimahi from Te Whare Hauora; Te Puna Oranga, He Waka Tapu and Te Runanga o Nga Maata Waka are actively involved in the Integrated Safety Response pilot but our particular focus that mobilises our hearts and minds is the momentum associated with Tu Pono.

It was a great week for Tu Pono as Maire Kipa and I also met with Arihia Bennett – the Chief Executive Officer of Te Runanga o Ngai Tahu, Robyn Wallace and Kim Wetini from Te Puni Kokiri.   The leadership, the collaboration and the commitment of the iwi, kaupapa Māori providers, the Māori Development Ministry and whānau is truly inspiring in this space.

And in watch this space – tune in to TV One this Sunday morning to watch our beautiful Aunty Kiwa Hutchen (Mereana Moki Kiwa Hutchen)  talk about her life lessons on Waka Huia.





This week I spoke at an event with a range of amazing entities and enterprises, called CLiMB (Collaborative Leadership to Inspire Māori Business).

CL2IMB  is a series of information sharing and networking event that brings together agencies that support Māori business and Māori business people. The purpose of the event is to enable Crown agencies and NGOs to share the services that they offer with whānau and also allows time to meet the representatives of each organisation in person.


Attending the event were Poutama Trust, Māori Women’s Development Inc, New Zealand Trade and Enterprise, NZ Story, Te Puni Kokiri, Tiki Wines, BDO.


I loved the presentation by Karl Wixon of NZ Story; illustrating the way in which indigenous entities express balance and equilibrium through a model founded on

  • Kaitiakitanga – guardianships (a culture of caring)

  • Ingenuinty and auahatanga

  • integrity and mana.



Coming Up


Whānau mai –  is  a journey through pregnancy, childbirth and the early weeks of parenting that incorporates a Maori world view and traditional Maori birthing practices. 

 On Sat 21st October  a 1 day course is available to be held at Te Puawaitanga ki Ōtautahi 153 Gilberthorpes Road, Hornby 9am to 4pm  (kai will be supplied).

It will focus on

  • kaupapa Maori birthing practices

  • breastfeeding

  • the weaving of muka – to tie the cord

  • making from clay an ipu whenua -  for the placenta.

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Luke EganComment