Sponsorship boost for Aoraki Bound

The opportunity for young Māori to develop leadership skills and personal and cultural growth on the Aoraki Bound programme has received a boost thanks to a renewed partnership between Te Rūnanga o Ngāi Tahu, the Bank of New Zealand and Genesis Energy.

BNZ and Genesis Energy confirmed their support for Aoraki Bound at a signing ceremony today (December 2) at Clearwater Resort in Christchurch. Both will support the programme until 2017, each offering $25,000 per year for three years.

The signing – by Te Rūnanga o Ngāi Tahu Kaiwhakahaere Tuarua and Iwi Capability board member, Lisa Tumahai, BNZ Client Director Institutional Banking, Craig Treder and General Manager Genesis Energy, Tracey Hickman – ensures Aoraki Bound continues to provide future Māori leaders with a unique experience, at the same time facilitating greater cultural understanding and respect.

Aoraki Bound combines Ngāi Tahu cultural knowledge and expertise with the experience and reputation of Outward Bound, in a journey from Anakiwa at the top of Te Waipounamu to the foot of Aoraki/Mount Cook in the south.

The programme has been running for nine years and 197 participants have taken part since its inception in 2006. A diverse range of people, from 18-59 years from all walks of life have graduated from the course.

Ngāi Tahu Kaiwhakahaere Tuarua Lisa Tumahai says the commitment from BNZ and Genesis Energy is critical to support the continuation of this important development programme.

“It demonstrates that the partnership between our organisations is truly built on a commitment to develop young leaders,” she says.

“Aoraki Bound is a life-changing experience for our young people. It gives them a sense of identity, a pathway to knowing themselves and recognizing their own potential, and a confidence to stand tall as Ngāi Tahu and be proud of who they are.

“It challenges them to aspire to be all they can be. The programme assists us in fostering and growing strong leadership – mō tātou, ā, mō kā uri ā muri ake nei – for us and our children after us. Aoraki Matatū – permanently steadfast.”

Aoraki Bound had provided both Māori and non-Māori with the chance to walk in the footsteps of Ngāi Tahu ancestors and learn the history of Te Waipounamu. The course plays an important role in reflecting and meeting the needs of New Zealand’s rich tapestry of ethnic diversity.

BNZ Client Director Craig Treder says: “Leadership development is a critical element in enhancing Māori business as a valuable economic force within New Zealand. BNZ’s continued support of the Aoraki Bound programme is part of our commitment to providing challenging opportunities for promising Maori leaders, who will play an ever increasing role in enabling a higher achieving New Zealand.”

Genesis Energy General Manager, Tracey Hickman says that the concepts that lie at the heart of the Aoraki Bound are reflected in the company’s community investment strategy.

“Our community investment programme is strongly focused on supporting educational initiatives that give young people the life skills they need to become positive contributing members of our society. In addition, Aoraki Bound provides a cultural dimension and opportunity to broaden understanding and appreciation of Ngai Tahu history and cultural values, and allows us to further enhance our own knowledge and relationship with Ngai Tahu. Aoraki Bound is a truly significant programme, and as a result of Genesis Energy’s involvement in the community through our ownership and operation of Tekapo A and B power stations, we are proud to continue our support of this initiative.”