Kia ora koutou,
Last Saturday was an important day with the re-opening of the Tuamātene Wharenui. Around 30 whānau came to what was quite an emotional event. Takahi Whenua (H&G) had the fire going and the kai sorted when we arrived. Paora Mackie sounded the pūtātara to gather everyone just before sunrise, and Jeremy MacLeod performed karakia as we entered the wharenui. When the lights came on it was a very moving moment and a great sense of achievement for everyone involved.
We were lucky enough to have Awhina Twomey at the blessing. Awhina helped Sean Bennett-Ogden and whānau to paint the mural on the wall depicting significant Rangitāne sites in the Wairau and shared the kōrero around that. Awhina was in the Wairau facilitating the Wānanga Ahurea at Ūkaipō with Jeremy. Members from around the motu attended the weekend wānanga learning karakia, whaikōrero, karanga and waiata. We have another Wānanga Ahurea coming up on 23-25 August, so if you missed out this time you are welcome to come along then.
Funding for a proposed 8 metre high Pou at the Ōpaoa Bridge has been approved by NZTA and we are proceeding with this as a joint project with two other iwi. Installation of this landmark will be March next year when the new bridge opens. We will keep you all updated as the project progresses.
Please remember Tina Porou will be at Ūkaipō this Sunday at 10am to discuss the draft proposed conservation plan for Te Pokohiwi and the Wairau Boulder Bank. Tina will share and discuss the draft plan with iwi members and after lunch we will have the opportunity to hui with DOC.
Next Monday, 17 June, we will be planting a Karaka in front of Rangitāne House to commemorate the signing of the Tiriti o Waitangi at Horahora-Kakahu (Port Underwood) on 17 June 1840 by Rangitāne leader Ihaia Kaikoura and also the renaming of Rangitāne House on 17 June 2013. There will be light refreshments in the foyer afterwards, come along if you can make it.
We are excited and honoured to be hosting Te Tapuwaetahi o Rangitāne (Rangitāne Festival) next Easter weekend. This is a major event and we will need volunteers to help. If you would like to be in the working group or involved in anyway please call the office. We will have regular updates and information over the coming months leading up to the festival.
Mā te wā,