About Kōanga Kai

Kōanga Kai is an initiative that encourages whānau rangatiratanga by building healthy and sustainable kai production practices, influenced by the traditions and mātauranga of our tīpuna. We support entities throughout Te Waipounamu to deliver Kōanga Kai programmes within their communities. By providing physical resources and coaching, whānau are empowered to participate in communal gardens or create māra kai in their homes, and engage in planting, hunting, gathering, foraging, producing, preserving and preparing kai.

Kōanga Kai is about self-determination and sustainability – kai production that puts whānau in charge of creating healthy lifestyles, and that is environmentally and economically sustainable. Scroll down to find a map detailing the entities that are currently delivering Kōanga Kai initiatives throughout Te Waipounamu and Wharekauri/Rēkohu.

Applications for our 2024 Kōanga Kai funding round are now closed.

“Kōanga Kai represents the energy of spring, new shoots of life and the excitement of possibility. It also links us to the legacy of Rākaihautū, who travelled throughout Te Waipounamu and carved out its lakes and rivers using his kō, or digging stick.”

Kōanga Kai Stories

Kōanga Kai – Te Pā o Rākaihautū

At Christchurch’s Te Pā o Rākaihautū, tamariki play an important role in the development and maintenance of the school’s māra kai, while gaining a profound sense of knowledge of who they are and how they are connected to life in a much broader way.
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Kōanga Kai – Whare Manaaki

With Whare Manaaki’s association with Te Pūtahitanga and its Kōanga Kai initiative, there’s been a huge growth in community spirit and wellbeing
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Kōanga Kai – Te Hapū o Ngāti Wheke, Rāpaki

Ngāti Wheke has a rich history of kai cultivation with produce used for trade in the 19th Century. Today, Michael Parata-Peiffer of Rāpaki is working hard provide whānau within his hapū with māra kai and he’s not doing anything by halves.
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