Kaua e kōrero mō te awa, kōrero ki te awa.

There is a well-loved whakatauki of Whanganui, don't talk about the river, talk to the river.   It represents the worldview that the health and wellbeing of the iwi, hapū and other communities of the river are intimately connected to te awa tupua.  Te Awa Tupua is an indivisible and living whole from the mountains to the sea, incorporating the Whanganui River and all of its physical and metaphysical elements.   At its purest form it is epitomised by the saying, ko au te awa, ko te awa ko au.

This week our independent assessment panel travelled to Whanganui to meet together, to discuss the applications that came in for Wave Eight.   One of the particular features of this round was that 65% of the 74 applications received, were completely new to the process. That’s a great sign of Whānau Ora in action when so many whānau are initiating a new start for their lives.


Our Assessment Panel: Malcolm Morrison, Dr Lorraine Eade, Maania Farrar, Dame Tariana, Helen Leahy and our friend Te Ringa Te Awhe

Reunions and Reinvigoration

A new start was what the Beard whānau committed to at Koukourarata last weekend.   Led by the twins Tanemahuta and Teakaraupo, the whānau agreed to some key ideas around protection from sexual violence.

We have an important role as whānau. Collectively we can provide support; to ensure there is protection and safety around victims, past and future.  It is whānau who can assist in prevention and ensuring that we are a part of a process of healing and hauora for the future. Talking together about keeping ourselves safe is one of the most important focus points for whānau – providing that platform for being able to share stories and situations which have caused harm or hurt.


If someone tells you they have been sexually harmed…what can you do?


  • Tū Rangatira (Belief) Let them know you believe them. Try not to judge them or question them. Acknowledge their courage. Ensure that speaking out was the right thing to do. Try to give them your full attention.  

  • Whakarongo! (Listen) Listening – can be more important than talking, just being present with them making them feel comfortable and supported. Try not to question them or offer too much advice, but ensure their safety is a priority.

  • Tū Pono (Stand in your truth) Know if someone discloses sexual abuse or rape to you, that you are seen as a trusted person who they feel can awhi them in this heavy take. Your response to them is key for their journey forward. Acknowledge their courage in having the strength to be honest. Do let them know what help you may need to access to support them and the limits of your abilities to supporting them. Be patient. Remember, it will take your loved one some time to deal with the assault.

It is always important to know there is help….

Matariki Tu Rākau national planting project


The Nelson Returned Services Association is working with Project Maitai/Mahitahi to hold a commemorative planting as part of the Matariki Tu Rākau national planting project, commemorating the end of the First World War in 1918.
People are invited to help plant around 1300 trees on Saturday 28 July at Black Hole on the Maitai River (Branford Park area). Planting will start at 11 am and go through until 2pm. To join in, just turn up on the day – boots and spades are recommended although we will have some spades available for volunteers to use.
There will be a barbecue and coffee cart, family games, live entertainment, kapa haka and service cadets display of drills.

He Waka Kotuia on Fire

The stars were out in Dunedin last Friday night at Te Mahi Tamariki at the Town Hall no less!   All the reports we received were ecstatic about the quality, the harmonies, the style, the talents on display.   Ka mau te wehi!


Photo Credit: Rewa Pene photograph


Te Rūnanga o Ngāi Tahu and the Peter McKenzie Project of the J R McKenzie Trust are the founding partners of a new social change partnership, Tokona te Raki: Māori Futures Collective, designed to increase Māori participation, success and progression in education and employment in the Ngāi Tahu region.

Their mission is to move beyond short-term, under-funded, one-off pilot programmes

by making a long-term commitment to drive the systemic change required to enable Māori success and tackle inequality and poverty at its roots.

This week our offices hosted a crazy ‘data party’ as Tokona Te Raki brought together Infometrics, Tertiary Education Commission, Skills New Zealand and other would-be “data geeks” to discuss some of the wicked problems around Maori success.  Issues such as:

  • How do you build the curiosity of our whānau to love learning?

  • How do we take the insight and influence of current statistics to build capability, eg if the median income for Ngai Tahu is $27,000 what do we need to do to lift the skills and qualifications in order to move into higher income brackets?

  • What do we need to do to embed ‘literacy’ as core to learning?

Click here to read the Change Agenda: Income Equity for Māori report

Click here to read the call to action in Creating the Catalyst for Māori Success


 check the website at www.maorifutures.co.nz

Literacy is the key

Te Pūtahitanga o Te Waipounamu is currently working with three kura in Christchurch around building literacy confidence and capability.  The three kura involved with this project are Haeata Community Campus, Te Kura Kaupapa Māori o Waitaha and Te Pā o Rākaihautu.

  • Te Pā o Rakaihautu: Preparing young minds for planting the desire to read

  • Te kura kaupapa Māori o Waitaha: Te Mātau Ahumoni  - financial literacy

  • Haeata Community Campus: upskilling whānau with knowledge and strategies to support their tamariki with their literacy development in the reo-rua kaupapa

Participating whānau members have identified a number of highlights, and particularly the improvement in the way in which whānau work with their tamaiti to improve their literacy and numeracy.  A closer relationship with whānau and the kura/school was another outcome. There was also appreciation by whānau that they were given an opportunity to learn how to create and use literacy and numeracy resources to ensure that their tamariki have learning support at home.  

Whānau were involved in the creation of the resources. Learning to use technology was also a highlight.  Other reports included that that tamariki are making outstanding progress in their literacy levels in such a short time. The whānau appreciate the support their tamariki are receiving and it is great to be able to talk with the whānau about their needs and all the barriers they face with supporting their tamariki at home.

Public submissions open for Whānau Ora Review

Individuals, whānau, groups and organisations are invited to make an online submission on the Independent Review of Whānau Ora.

Public submissions can be made online at tpk.nz/whanauorareview from 11 July to 15 August 2018. The submission questions are available in English, Te Reo Māori, Samoan, Tongan and Cook Islands Māori but can be completed in any language.

Chairperson of the Whānau Ora Review Panel, Caren Rangi, says, “This is a great opportunity for anyone who has an interest in Whānau Ora to share their experiences, understandings and insights of Whānau Ora that relate to the purposes of the Review”.

Toitū Hauora 2018

Luke EganComment