Don’t leave town until you’ve seen the country


In the 1980s in Aotearoa, there was an advertising campaign established by the tourism department which brandished the slogan, don’t leave home until you’ve seen the country.  This week I had to also remind myself of another slogan my Nāna used to say, “you don’t know how lucky we are” (inspired by Fred Dagg!).

I have a sister holidaying in Hawai’i; a brother-in-law in Los Angeles, and a friend in Nairobi – and it has been a challenge to not let envy creep in.   That was until one of our team, Sue Quinn, returned from a weekend away in Twizel with these most spectacular landscape views of Lake Pukaki, Maunga Aoraki, 

The saying 'he kapua kei rungai i Aoraki, whakarewa whakarewa' (the cloud that floats aloft Aoraki, for ever fly, stay aloft) refers to the cloud that often surrounds Aoraki. Aoraki does not always 'come' out for visitors to see, just as a great chief is not always on 'show'. It is for Aoraki to choose when to emerge from his cloak of mist, a power and influence that is beyond mortals, symbolising the mana of Aoraki.   We are so grateful for the blessings of Aoraki and his brothers - the next highest peaks near him - Rakiro (Mount Dampier), Rakirua (Mount Teichelmann), Rarakiroa (Mount Tasman).


The Navigator Team on Tour

Our Navigator team has been hitting the road over these last few weeks, introducing new members of the team to our Navigators across Te Waipounamu.

First stop this week was Hokonui. The team fell in love with Melissa, our super Navigator, and were pleased to meet Tane who may well be a potential Navigator.  Our whānau are always looking out for brave men to step up to the Navigation role – let’s hope our trip to Hokonui got Tāne excited about the role. There were some awesome ideas coming from Hokonui to address their issues in their rohe. 

Next stop was Awarua Whānau Services where the dreams and aspirations for whānau shared by Mata Cherrington and her team lit the fire in the belly of our crew.

gWs84f (2).jpg

A walk through the Wairau Lagoons

This week Ngā Pakiaka o Te Morehu o Te Whenua Trust  in Wairau/Blenheim has guided 150 local primary school students through the Wairau Lagoons to share with them some of the wonderful pūrākau and traditional kōrero of the area.

Their three day lagoon hikoi saw them reach that point and their kaitiaki are now proudly demonstrating these taonga with the wider community. They believe that by doing so, allows everyone to enjoy our connection to the land, promoting its appreciation and protection for future generations.

Organisers Sue Parish, Keelan Walker and Dr Pete Meihana are thrilled with the significant milestone and achievement they have reached after starting their initiative last year.  Their goal has been to grow the traditional knowledge of the Ahi Kaa whānau in the Wairau so that they could operate confidently as kaitiaki of their whenua and their local heritage.

They have been supported by Lewis Smith who assisted with guiding the lagoon hikoi. Lewis and his whānau have been regular attendees and contributors to the wānanga over the last 18 months. He has emerged as a passionate and competent kaitiaki and in the recent hikoi he was their leading guide on the lagoon hikoi.

The Smith whānau also have their own Whānau Ora initiative – Te Tauihu Taonga.

Lewis Smith (002).jpg

Lewis is a carver and artist who creates taonga, he’s of Ngati Hinekauwhata, Ngati Kuia, Ngati Apa ki te Ra To and Ngai Tahu descent and takes inspiration from his tupuna as well as the history of the whenua. His wife, Sophie Smith - as well as tying the cord on all of their taonga - is responsible for everything behind the scenes, she is of Muaupoko , Ngati Kahungunu and Ngai Tahu descent. Their tamariki are Pirihira who is almost three and Mahina a Rangi eleven months old. They are a big part of the work they do and get to adventure around Te Tauihu in search of Kōhatu, exploring the whenua and learning about where they come from.

Lewis says “That's the thing I love about my mahi, that the art ties into the whakapapa and history of the whenua and our ancestors, as everything I do artistically is influenced by those things, they go hand in hand. I'm just lucky to have learned so much from my whanau that I can share through korero and art, best job in the world!” 

Safe Spaces to talk about Cancer

A Whānau Ora initiative, Te Tau Toko Ora, are holding wānanga to provide safe spaces to talk about cancer.

The first wānanga will be held this weekend at Te Hora Marae, 24 and 25 August

  • Whānau will learn about tools to look after yourself when supporting loved ones with cancer

  • Learn about support services, entitlements and rights 

  • Build connections and share journeys with other whānau in a safe space

  • Dispel the myths about causes and treatments of cancer:

Future wānanga will be held:

  • Waikawa Marae, 7 and 8 September

  • Whakatū Marae 5 and 6 October

Kumuhore Kanuka

It’s such food for the soul to see a young whānau making the best of their opportunities through Whānau Ora.  Kumuhore Kanuka in Blenheim seeks to establish the foundations of their land to a workable size, while investigating the feasibility of kanuka.  This is a whānau initiative that has established a five-year plan in which they are into their third year securing targets. They have developed their site, made networks of support and potential international business opportunities and researched and developed their next pathway to ensure sustainability. 

Having held wānanga and told their story of development, they have been asked to facilitate to other whānau that have created a  eco-system of  opportunities from honey, bee keeping, manuka, kanuka, medicinable and sustainable products within their wider whānau, hapū and iwi.   Kumuhore Kanuka have been planting to ensure they have the trees to maturity for a faster yield. 


The photograph features Lee and Sarah Mason with Sophia (8) Julia (3) and Eadie (5 months). 

Learning from Mum


It is always beautiful when we meet up with key people in the Whānau Ora world and see them in the luxury of their own whānau space.   Our advisor, Gina-Lee Duncan, was rapt this week to meet up with Whānau Enterprise Coach, Chan Collins, and her Mum Wairata Marshall (he putiputi o Tuhoe).     A true taonga.

WildKrafty Aotearoa

This whānau initiative has now created their own legal entity.  Our original intent in investing in WildKrafty Aotearoa as a whānau initiative was to support whānau working together to maintain their aspiration of economic independence. Noeline has been training in administration and business along with her daughter to create firm foundations of a startup business.   Their budget and our investment has supported them in building a registered kart, and small amount of resourcing. A lot of their marketing and support has occurred from whānau engagement. WildKrafty Aotearoa will establish an online gallery to enable sales of their WildKrafty Kai rongoa products.

The photograph features Noeline and Shane standing in their commercial kitchen that will assist them with creating their products for their on line customers. Being transportable they can now also attend markets and shows to take their products to the customer.  We are so blown away with their innovation - Noelene and her sister Amelia are both immersed in study and working hard towards self-determination. Shane is also assisting by being busy at the men’s shed with their son, making the finishing touches to their kart.

Coming to the South : Digital Branding and Marketing to take you next level

Are you interested in the tech industry? 

Ariki Creative Limited in partnership with Digital Wings and Te Pūtahitanga o Te Waipounamu, invite you to register to attend our free Tech Careers workshop (valued at $300+ per ticket).    Tickets are limited to 20 Rangatahi, 15yrs - 25yrs. 

We hope to see you there, it's gonna be an awesome day!


But wait, there’s more……

Due to popular demand – the word spreading like wildfire – the rangatahi workshop in Dunedin is almost at maximum.

Ariki Creative has agreed to run a third workshop in Dunedin, Wednesday 4th Sept – 3pm-6pm.   This one will be for any entity associated with Te Putahitanga o Te Waipounamu and Whānau Ora commissioning.  

Please email for more information on the afternoon workshop.

Lunching with Te Puni Kokiri


We had a great luncheon hui with Te Puni Kokiri Christchurch office this week, trying to catch up on all that we were doing, and the ways that we could work together to ensure that whānau are supported to make manifest their greatness.  

It was particularly exciting to hear about all the developments that are occurring with Oranga Marae.

Oranga Marae is about working to ensure:

  • marae are safe and healthy, contributing to the well-being of iwi, hapū and whānau

  • people are engaged on the marae and an increasing number of events and activities are held to ensure the transmission of mātauranga Māori

  • marae increasingly contribute to the revitalisation of te reo and tikanga Māori

  • whānau work together to develop the marae

Māori Women’s Welfare League Regional Conference – Kawatiri

Last week ended on a high when I was able to spend some time with some incredible movers and shakers, champions of courage, ambassadors of hope – the delegates from the Māori Women’s Welfare League branches in Te Waipounamu.

You can read my speech here.

With Kawatiri President, Sharon Arohanui Marsh

With Kawatiri President, Sharon Arohanui Marsh

With Taua Aroha Reriti-Crofts and Amiria Reriti.

With Taua Aroha Reriti-Crofts and Amiria Reriti.

unnamed (2).jpg

Opening date: Monday 19 August 2019
Closing date: Sunday 22 September 2019 (12 noon)

Kia hiwa ra!
We're calling on whānau to put forward your best ideas to invest in the future of all your whānau members, to harness their potential and make a positive impact.

Applications for Wave Ten ORA funding open on Monday 19 August 2019 and close on Sunday 22 September 2019 (12 noon).

Email your completed application to:

*Written applications must be completed on the official application form and submitted via email to by the closing date Sunday 22 September or they can be delivered to 10 Show Place by Friday 20 September 2019 (no later than 12 noon).

All supporting documents must accompany your application. Please use your first and last name as the subject of your email.

Use the ORA Application Workbook to organise your thoughts to develop and prepare your ideas before completing your application. Below are some templates that will help you along the way. If it’s your first time applying contact us or head along to a Wave Ten Workshop to gain more understanding about the Whānau Ora pou and what sorts of initiatives we fund.

Application Form (122 KB)

ORA Workbook (2MB)

Wave Ten Roadshow
Schedule of Wave Ten Workshops These workshops are designed to help you learn more about our funding and also to prepare an application.
Keep up to date with our events on Facebook :

Planning Templates

Budget Planning Calculator.xls (85KB)

Timeline of Activities (36KB)

Risk and Mitigation Plan (42KB)

Reporting and Measuring Information (44KB)

Business Plan / only applicable to enterprise initiatives (258KB)

Tips on how to write a business plan

This is a useful resource to help you understand how to approach sustainability — Planning for Success (3.36MB)

The following link is useful if your initiative requires a policy to meet the Vulnerable Childrens Act 2014

For help contact us on 0800 187 689 or email

Applications for Wave Ten open on Monday 19 August 2019 and close on Thursday 22 September 2019

Once you have read through the Ora Application Workbook and completed your application, you can submit your application by email to by Thursday 22 September at 12 noon.

Luke EganComment