Māori Harvard graduate dedicated to helping indigenous

Ko Kingi Snelgar, uri nō Te Taitokerau, kei te whakamahi i ōna pūkenga ture hei āwhina i ngā iwi taketake. Inanahi nei, i whakakanohi ia i te iwi Māori ki te Whakakotahitanga o Ngā Whenua o te Ao. Ko tā te roia, paetahi hoki o te whare wānanga o Harvard, ka taea e te Māori, ngā moemoeā ki ēnei mahi te whakatutuki.

Nōnā tata nei tū ai te roia Māori a Kingi Snelgar ki te hui Permanent Forum on Indigenous Issues hei whakapāoho i ana whakaaro me pēhea ai rātou e taea te whakapai ake i ngā āhuatanga i waenga i ngā kāwanatanga me ngā iwi taketake.

I tērā tau riro ai a Kingi me tōna hoawahine a Kiri Toki i te kirihipi Fulbright hei whakatewhatewha i ngā tohu paerua ture ki Harvard.

Hei tā Snelgar, “Even better is that Kiri and I did it together, you know we were a team basically so it's never just me doing these things it’s us and it's Kiri's mum as well who is a member of the UN forum that I spoke in.”

Tata ki te kotahi tau rāua e noho ana ki Amerika, e whakamahi ana rāua i o rāua pūkenga ture hei awhi i ngā hapori iwi taketake o South Dakota me te iwi Navaho.

After a year in the states, the graduates are using their skill sets in the Tribal Court systems of South Dakota and the Navaho Nation. 

“The whole kaupapa for why I wanna go there is because it seems like it's a place that's really struggling with their issues and I want to see how our iwi can deal with sovereignty where it's not perfect and basically if I can help cause they seem like they need the help then that's a bonus too”, hei tā Snelgar.

E mea ana te mema ō mua o Te Rākau Ture i te whare wānanga o Tāmaki, ehara rawa i te moemoeā mo te Māori i te whai i te ture ki te whare wānanga o Harvard. 

Hei tā Snelgar, “After a year at Harvard we definitely have the skills and the unique world view that's really valuable at a place like Harvard. Being tangata whenua and issues like climate change, you know we have such a valuable perspective to share.”