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From the Editor

As we go to print with this issue of TE KARAKA, Oranga Tamariki continues to be at the forefront of media attention. As is often the case the coverage is largely condemning of the actions of the organisation and its leadership. I am sure there are many success stories to counter these but I guess they don’t make for such sensational headlines.

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From the CEO
Haea Te Awa

With the government’s Wellbeing Budget now announced, we can get on with our own future planning. For the past 18 months we have been working on turning our attention to better positioning our papatipu rūnanga to lead their own wellbeing, environment, and economic aspirations. The idea of regional development has created a groundswell of interest across our rūnanga, with a number readying themselves to lead the way into local investment opportunities. The thought of creating local employment with our own whānau in our own businesses in our own regions is certainly something to get excited about.

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Ka hao te Rakatahi
Let’s cut the toxic banter

Nā Nuku Tau I want to begin by acknowledging the horrific events that took place in Christchurch on 15 March. It’s genuinely hard to find words to express how disgusting and heartbreaking the massacre was. I was gladdened to see our tribe wrap support around those affected, and sincerely hope we as a nation can…

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He Whakaaro
“Hello, brother”

On Friday 15 March 2019 Haji-Daoud Nabi stood at the door of the Al Noor mosque and welcomed his killer with the words, “Hello, brother.” These two words of faith, of welcome, and of fellowship are the light of hope that shone brightly that dark day. There was no anger in the voice of Haji-Daoud Nabi, who would be killed for his faith. There was no aggression. There were just two gentle words of welcome that will reverberate throughout our history.

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He Reta
Letters to the Editor

The Māori parliamentary seats came about in the middle of the Victorian era. At the time politics in New Zealand amounted to a series of personal and provincial struggles. Victorian views on class and gender are telling. New Zealand was governed for much of the 19th century by male well-to-do landed cliques in provinces. To an extent this explains how Māori were excluded from the political process up to the establishment of the Māori parliamentary seats.

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Devoted to Dance

Arawyn has only just turned 10, and Mileena turned 12 the day after we spoke. “She’s going to be a teenager soon,” Arawyn says, sticking out her tongue and making a noise her older sister playfully mimics. The sisters have just returned from a big trip to the United States, an early birthday present for Mileena, who won a coveted spot in one of the largest ballet competitions in the world. Of the 10,000 applicants to the Youth America Grand Prix (YAGP) Ballet Competition in New York, Mileena was amongst just 1200 selected to attend a week of master classes, mentoring, and the chance to be discovered by directors of the most prestigious dance companies from around the world.

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Beyond the Cow Shed

Ash-Leigh Campbell is an up-and-coming leader in the primary sector. At just 28, she already has a solid decade of experience, from milking dairy cows to sustainability management and sector-related technology and innovation training. The hands-on dairy farm work saw her named the first wahine finalist in the 2016 Ahuwhenua Young Māori Dairy Farmer Awards and recognition for her leadership qualities at the New Zealand Young Farmers Excellence Awards. And for the past 18 months, Ash-Leigh (Ngāi Tahu – Kāti Huirapa Rūnaka ki Puketeraki) has been employed by the iwi as Technical Farm Manager with Ngāi Tahu Farming – a role she says has grown in scope alongside her.

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Oranga Tamariki
Where to from here?

In April 2017, the statutory care and protection agency for Aotearoa (formerly Child, Youth and Family – CYF) re-established themselves as Oranga Tamariki, committing to a five-year transformational plan to overhaul the culture and practice of the entire organisation. In November last year, Te Rūnanga o Ngāi Tahu and Oranga Tamariki entered into a Strategic Partnership, in keeping with the government agency’s intention to work more closely with iwi to improve outcomes for Māori.

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When life is the learning

When you’re 17 and the Disco Queen, the world’s your oyster. And if you’re earning lots of money dancing, there’s not much point in continuing your education, is there? Especially if it means doing something tough like business law! “Well, I don’t know if I would give my 17-year-old self that advice now,” muses Kera Baker, who is the Associate Director of Māori Health at the South Canterbury District Health Board (SCDHB), as well as a director of Aoraki Environmental Consultancy, and former deputy chair of health provider Arowhenua Whānau Services. “Don’t get me wrong. I’ve had a wonderful life, and many fantastic experiences, but I should have stayed at school and educated myself.”

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Festival of Colour – Wānaka

Wānaka’s Festival of Colour brings together a diverse spectrum of speakers, musicians, performing arts groups, and artists across a range of venues over 10 days and nights. Against a backdrop of autumnal oranges and reds, the festival, now in its 16th year, brings a warmth and vibrancy to the growing lakeside town as the temperature drops and daylight hours shorten.

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