Our rangatahi trip went off without a hitch! The kids were taken to a number of significant places and got to hear from some influential people based in Wellington and it really was an eye-opening experience. Here is a bit of a summary and some pics of the days’ activities.
Day 1 we started the day at the Royal NZ Police college, and were taken on a guided tour by Wai our host and Sgt Sarah Stirling who encouraged our Rangatahi to think about a career in the police especially our wahine. The museum was cool as well and our prospective police men and women were like kids in a lolly shop trying on all the uniforms.
After lunch at the lake we headed to the Adrenalin Forest and the highlight was that everyone had a go! It was challenge physically and mentally, but EVERYONE HAD A GO! The hosts at the park said our Rangatahi were polite and respectful....Tahia was our champion and finished level 5, he probably would have completed level 6 if we hadn't run out of time.
Te Kahu Rolleston, wow INSPIRING...the key message, there is always more than one path to carve out your destiny and desires, choose the one that makes you happy, suits your passion and be proud of who you are and where you come from.
Then it was dinner out at a restaurant and a quick trip up Matairangi (Mt Victoria) to view Welly's by night at the lookout...
Day 2 Our day started off at Parliament and we were given a grand tour of the beehive and parliament buildings. Our Rangatahi were able to walk into the debating chamber, see where everyone sits, see where parliament is sworn in by the Queen or her representative and the main dining/conference halls in parliament(we had no phones so no photos sorry).
Kiritapu Allen from Pirirakau a new Labour MP joined us and we were fortunate to go into Matangireia the old Maori Affairs select committee room that has housed people like Sir Apirana Ngata, Sir Maui Pomare, Sir Peter Buck and a long list of Maori MPs throughout Parliaments 163 year history.
Then our Rangatahi were able to sit in Labour Party Caucus room and hear some awesome korero from Kiritapu about the pathway that has led her to where she is today. This visit was a highlight for many today.
After Parliament we took a short trip to Te Papa Tongarewa, where another whanaunga from Ngāti Ranginui and Ngāti Pukenga, Puawai Cairns, the Acting Head Māori Curator who was responsible for assisting with developing the Rongowhakaata and Gallipoli exhibitions gave us a guided tour and we were able to get a sense of her absolute passion for her mahi, hear her insights and knowledge all via personal headphones. We were so fortunate to have Puawai as a guide and we were shown through Rongomaraeroa (the Marae), the Rongowhakaata Exhibition, the Gallipoli Exhibition then a back of house tour to see the taonga not on display but being cared for in Ahuru Mowai(Māori Taonga Room) and Te Whare Pora (Māori Textiles and Flags Room) another honour for our Rangatahi. Then everyone had nearly 2 hours to see the whole museum and they took the opportunity to explore.
Day 3 Massey University was first up this morning and we were welcomed by an Awesome team at Massey, Dale-Maree one of the Maori Lectures, Doc Ferris, Senior Maori Advisor and some student recruitment advisors. We were shown their schools of Music, Art, Wearable Art, Fashion and design, Spatial Design & Construction. Where we got to see the latest state of the art technology in music recording and creation, film sound effects and voice over studio, wearable arts students doing their stuff and some 3D printers in action(see the pics) where students create things on their PC and the printers create them in 3D image. They are pretty cool! The tour, information and shared experiences from staff and students was awesome!
The tour finished at the old dominion museum beside the monument to the people of Parihaka that were prisoners at that sight following the invasion of Parihaka in Taranaki. There were a few people around because the 100 year commemoration of Passchendaele was about to happen just below us at the National War Memorial.
After lunch we headed to the CBD and a walk around the Capitals art and culture precinct was a good change from all the Wānanga and information sessions over the past 4 days. Unfortunately we didn't get to WETA(their error) but maybe another time.
Ngā Taonga Sound & Vision is New Zealand’s moving image and sound archive. We were hosted by Lawrence Whararau a veteran of NZ film who shared his experience in the industry. We were shown archival films dating back to 1901, the return of the Maori battalion in 1946(which depicted a happy homecoming when in reality it was a Kawe mate, he shared that the first time he heard the radio recordings of the event he couldn't sit through about 15 minutes of it because it was of the wahine whailing, sobbing and crying, for the soldiers that never came home and the 200 or so Maori battalion that were still in Italy as patients and prisoners of war. There was also a clip of 3 Chiefs talking about Maori life from the 1960's, Taika Watiti's first short film "Two Cars one night" the prequel to "Boy" and finally we watched Poi e...Lawrence had some very appropriate and wise words for our Rangatahi and ended with a whakatauki...
Ruia taitea, kia tū ko taikākā anake.
Shake off the sap-wood, and let the hard heart-wood only stand.
In a totara tree the taitea is the outer, white or sapwood, which soon decays, and near the centre is the taikaka or hardest wood. Encouraging our Rangatahi to be strong and proud, your outer may change. It always be true to who you are, as Maori, as a whanau...friends will come and go, but whanau is forever and if one thing the industry has taught him...when your friends have no money, whanau will always help you.
166 Seventeenth Avenue, TAURANGA 3112
(opposite the Historic Village and the first building on the left on your way to Te Wananga o Aotearoa).
PO Box 2526,