With the help of funding from an American group, Tom Roa's Māori translation of Alice in Wonderland is being gifted to Māori schools in an event at Waikato University's Te Kohinga Mārama Marae. Roa says a copy will be sent to every Māori Medium Education school in New Zealand for young readers to enjoy.
11-year-old Meg Rolleston and her friends are keen to delve into the pages of the Māori translation of The Adventures of Alice in Wonderland.
“I really liked the English version, so I'm really excited to read this book,” says Meg.
The reo version was released in October this year. A copy will be sent to 267 Māori language schools nation-wide.
Translator Tom Roa says, “This book is for children, so that they may be captured by this book as I was to a different world, a nonsensical world, to see and hear the language and its whimsy.”
Written by English author Lewis Carroll, the celebrated book its 150th anniversary this year. $2,500 US was gifted by a member of the Lewis Carroll Society of North America, to ensure Māori schools received the book.
Meg says, “I like the way Lewis Carroll has written this book because it's different to other books. He's really intelligent.”
“The group wants the book to be translated into every language in the world. So this Māori version is the 104th translation of this book,” says Mr Roa.
Next week the books will be distributed to the Māori language schools.