Ira Tangata, Ira Atua

As a child growing up I would stand on maunga that surrounded my whare and imagine I had the mana to control the elements – change the direction of the winds – declaring to Hineomairangi and Tāwhirimātea to heed to my words. After my karanga I would listen for the tree to chatter, birds toContinue reading “Ira Tangata, Ira Atua”

Re-claiming by re-telling

Sharing our stories is an important part of healing and giving back. I was humbled when asked to join the Te Maatanga Doctoral Network for Waikato-Tainui College for Research & Development. My doctoral journey was not the easiest but neither was my journey to get there. Without the love, encouragement and support of whānau, friendsContinue reading “Re-claiming by re-telling”

My conscious puku

Wairua We are not our body, mind and experiences we are wairua – consciousness. I see the universe as a projection of our stories, our pūrākau – a trillion stories, connected like synapses in the brain creating electric static, vibrating power to life all at once. The static projecting out every individuals perception of theirContinue reading “My conscious puku”

Insight into my practice

This painting is a representation of my mātauranga. It shows the mahi, kaupapa, training and skills that I have been gifted to share with ao-mārama – our world. I acknowledge and honour the lens in which each of us may look at this peitatanga (painting). Just as I regard legitimate knowledge as context specific andContinue reading “Insight into my practice”

The Taniwha

My first post. Identity at any meaningful level cannot be manufactured or manipulated; it is as much genetic imprint as formative experience. No matter what destructive processes we have gone through, eventually the taniwha stirs in all of us, and we can only be who we are. Merata Mita in Dennis & Bierenga, 1996, p.Continue reading “The Taniwha”

8,000 burpees for Movember!

In support of Movember, an annual event raising awareness for men’s mental health. I was part of a roopū that were challenged to burpee the height of Mt Everest, which is over 8,000 burpees in one week.  The goal of the challenge is to burpee the height of Mt Everest, which is exactly 8,848m tall.Continue reading “8,000 burpees for Movember!”

Indigenous Optometry

I presented to the LIOEN ‘Leaders in Indigenous Optometry Education Network’ today and I gained some awesome kōrero and insight from the Indigenous speakers such as Professor Gregory Phillips, Renata Watene – Māori Optometrist, Dr Kristopher Rallah-Baker and Shannon Davis – first Aboriginal woman Optometrist. Greg opened by asking “How did we care for ourContinue reading “Indigenous Optometry”

Leadership for good.

Teah. In Greek the mythological Thea (Teah) was Greek goddess of light and mother of the sun; moon and dawn. Hmmm I will take that. I am passionate in a gritty kind of way, a mix of passion and perseverance, about the continued advancement of Māori and Indigenous peoples, and see it as an honourContinue reading “Leadership for good.”

Stay Brown!

To “Stay Brown” means to privilege, amplify and exemplify your Indigenous heritage – Te Ao Māori in the ways that hold you, speak to you and guide you. It means exploring your whakapapa, learning about your lands, your pūrākau (ancestral/whānau stories). Learn about and care for the Maunga that shadow over your whenua, the awaContinue reading “Stay Brown!”

Whakarongo

Whakarongo, whakarongo, whakarongoKi te tangi a te manu e karanga neiTui, tui, tuituia!Tuia i runga, Tuia I raro,Tuia i roto, tuia i waho,Tuia i te here tangataKa rongo te pō, Ka ronga te pō.Tuia i te kāwai tangata i heke maiI Hawaiki nui, I Hawaiki roa,i Hawaiki pāmamaoI hono ki te wairua, ki te whaiContinue reading “Whakarongo”

That space between cells speaks

The lessons of tīpuna imprinted within, without, through and in between. That space between cells speaks without words, screams with emotion. I feel more deeply when I am still, calm and grounded. Tangaroa-a-mua I have consciously and unconsciously observed and felt maramataka – Māori lunar calendar. I come in and out of the awareness ofContinue reading “That space between cells speaks”

Aro ki te wairua o te hā

This statement is deeply important to our whānau it embodies what we strive for everyday. What it means to us is the acknowledgement, responsibly and action of aroha beyond human form and knowing. We understand that Aroha is one of the most emancipating values, not in a loving, romantic kind of way but freedom, toContinue reading “Aro ki te wairua o te hā”

All those being culturally responsive & appropriate please sit down!

Decolonisation is about the decentering of whiteness as the owners of the world forever W.E.B. Du Bois, 1920 … even talk about cultural responsiveness and appropriateness can overlook and ignore the history of colonisation experienced by many Indigenous peoples and the consequent need to challenge racism and recognise indigenous sovereignty (Cram & Mertens, 2016). WeContinue reading “All those being culturally responsive & appropriate please sit down!”

Gritty – Passion & Perseverance

Spending so much time outside as a child allowed me to wonder, play and imagine. As an adult te tai ao – the environment provides me with many things. It grounds me, blows my hurt away, swirls all around me and makes me feel like my emotion is manageable. I believe that everything and anythingContinue reading “Gritty – Passion & Perseverance”

Kirimoko – Blood & Bone Holder

Kirimoko. The seen face of life, land, space and love. Skin breathing. The breath of our bodies, protection, oxygen, our blood and bone holder. An expression of self, relationships. To stand out or fit in? Ink holder, cells and whakapapa. Skin protected. We cover it in creams, lotions, make up, chemicals, shave, shape it, pierceContinue reading “Kirimoko – Blood & Bone Holder”

Indigenous Peoples Day (Everyday!)

Hei ngā kāwai nui, hei ngā kāwai roa, o ngā wai whakatere taniwha, o ngā wai pou ngā hoe, o ngā Mātua tīpuna, otira, o ngā toka tū whenua, o ngā Maunga kōrero, nei a Ngā Pou Mana e mihi atu ana i raro i te maru o IAHA Tena koutou katoa, E rere atuContinue reading “Indigenous Peoples Day (Everyday!)”

Feel the burn

Its been two years since my submission and it still burns. Not so much a raging fire but the embers are still hot. I wrote this poem after submitting my PhD. I watched a video on inspiring wahine. When I watched it, it sparked something in me.  She said “the world is waiting for you to setContinue reading “Feel the burn”

Raranga, raranga taku takapau: hapū ora for tamariki

Our research project’s name, Raranga, raranga taku takapau: hapū ora for tamariki, comes from an ancient karakia used during the birth of Tūhuruhuru the son of Hineteiwaiwa (the atua of childbirth and te whare pora – the house of weaving). It refers to the weaving of a ceremonial whariki (mat) for birth and serves toContinue reading “Raranga, raranga taku takapau: hapū ora for tamariki”

Transforming Health Literacy

Come on a journey with me, watch my art transform darkness into form. Turn your world upside down and unpack what it means to decolonise our ways of being. Lets start with reclaiming what is ours – health literacy – a space for Māori to be ourselves; a space that is negotiated, adaptive and shaped byContinue reading “Transforming Health Literacy”

The Struggle for Ihumātao

It was a privilege to Chair the session with Pania Newton for this awesome kaupapa on Te Tiriti based futures + Anti Racism 2020. I learnt that occupation of land transformed a movement – The SOUL protest caught the attention of a nation and the world. The people came in their masses and stayed. IhumātaoContinue reading “The Struggle for Ihumātao”

Ngā Pou Mana

Transforming Māori health and wellbeing through courageous Māori leadership Our voluntary work comes in different forms and at the moment most of our time is committed to Ngā Pou Mana – Tangata Whenua Allied Health. George and I are both board members. We are very proud to be part of this National Organisation that supportsContinue reading “Ngā Pou Mana”

Kia haumaru te noho!

We wanted to share our whānau message of creating safe practices when our whānau arrive home from mahi – essential workers on the frontline. #nohokitekainga #kiahaumarutenoho #COVID #URUTA #COVID_19Indigenous_World We were inspired as pāpā comes home from mahi and follows these easy steps to keep us safe in our wee bubble. We had lots of fun making this video.Continue reading “Kia haumaru te noho!”

Re-post: Community reflections on Te Tiriti

February 6, 2019 Press Release – Hapai Te Hauora Committing to truth, committing to change: Community reflections on Te Tiriti today Over the last few weeks, Hāpai Te Hauora gathered the perspectives of those in our communities about Te Tiriti o Waitangi. We interviewed a range of people living in New Zealand about their commitmentContinue reading “Re-post: Community reflections on Te Tiriti”

Healing our Spirits

Gawuwi gamarda Healing Our Spirits Worldwide. We met on the country of the Cadigal peoples of the Eora Nation. The conference brought together Indigenous peoples from around the world to gather and celebrate the power of our knowledge and our wisdom, to share our stories, truths, histories with pride and purpose and to embrace spirit.Continue reading “Healing our Spirits”