The Mahinga Kai Enhancement Fund has been put on hold indefinitely.
This difficult decision has not been made lightly. Like many organisations in Aotearoa, the Ngāi Tahu Group has been hit hard by COVID-19. Our aim now is to ensure our operations continue to strengthen the resiliency of whānau and support our tribal aspirations, while navigating the financial constraints we face. As a result, the delivery of the Mahinga Kai Enhancement Fund is no longer possible at this time.
Our natural environment – whenua, waters, coasts, oceans, flora and fauna and how we engage with it, is crucial to Ngāi Tahu identity, our sense of unique culture and our on-going ability to keep our tikanga and mahinga kai practices alive.
It includes our commemoration of the places our tūpuna moved through in Te Waipounamu, and the particular mahinga kai resources and practices we used to maintain our ahi kā anchoring our whakapapa to the landscape.
Mahinga kai, wāhi tapu and other taonga are of paramount importance, being the cornerstone of the spiritual, historical, cultural, social and economic well-being of Ngāi Tahu. Protecting, enhancing, utilising and maintaining mahinga kai areas, resources and species and the rights of Ngāi Tahu to access these is the basis of the Mahinga Kai Enhancement Fund.
To date the Mahinga Kai Enhancement Fund has contributed just over $3.7 million to mahinga kai enhancement related projects including support towards species related projects such as Buff Weka, Kaupapa Kererū and Murihiku Kanakana along with support towards place based projects including Te Nohoaka o Tukiauau/ Sinclair Wetlands, Tūtaetapatu Lagoon- Tūhaitara Coastal Park and Te Waihora.