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TE KARAKA

He Whakaaro
When a Fortnite feels like six weeks

I’ve just found out we are going into full-on lockdown. I managed to get back from the Chatham Islands in time and I’m pumped. I have a lockdown plan that will be the envy of all parents. My kids will be better taught, better trained, just all-round better people under my home learning regime. Four weeks they say. It’ll be a breeze – or so I thought.

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He Whakaaro
Rising to the Challenge

Since the outbreak of COVID-19 late last year, the word “unprecedented” has been used countless times by politicians, health officials and media across the world to describe the severity of this global crisis. As the situation evolved, I found myself reflecting on another unprecedented outcome experienced here in Aotearoa – a groundswell of collective kindness and goodwill, accompanied by a widespread willingness to support the government’s strategy to protect our people and eliminate the virus. We saw it when our borders began to close, and those of us returning from overseas went into voluntary self-isolation to ensure we didn’t unwittingly contribute to the spread of the virus. We saw it when we adapted to social distancing requirements, finding new ways to express friendship and aroha.

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He Whakaaro
Kei Te Anga Atu Koe Ki Hea: Where to Post-COVID-19?

I often wonder whether those who started the Ngāi Tahu Claim could have imagined the fruits of their labours 170-plus years on. Take Matiaha Tiramōrehu for example, a refugee from Kaiapoi Pā, who survived extreme hardship and loss, had every reason to give up, but rather than be defeated was somehow blessed with a vision of a better future and became the founding father of Te Kerēme.

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Realising a better future

Shayne Walker (Ngāi Tahu – Awarua) is unreservedly excited when he talks about the opportunity for transformative change presented by the burgeoning partnership between Te Rūnanga o Ngāi Tahu and Oranga Tamariki. “I’m stoked, like superbly stoked, that our iwi has lined up for this,” he says. “In signing the partnership, they’ve said: ‘We want to get on with this. We want to care for our own tamariki, as well as all tamariki in care in our takiwā.’” More importantly, Oranga Tamariki is working alongside the iwi to realise that aspiration. “The CEO and senior leadership team are desperate for this to succeed,” says Shayne. “To me that’s the exciting part – my observation is that the national leadership team and the local staff that we deal with here in Dunedin, they turn up to be good partners.”

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