Topic: Tainui

Te Kāhui Rangatahi aim to bridge gap between youth and kaumātua

By Te Kāea
  • Waikato/Bay of Plenty

A youth group that strives to implement the prophecies of their ancestors recently attended the annual poukai celebrations at Te Awamarahi Marae, to encourage ideas and to engage in conversation about the Kīngitanga.

It's appropriate that young and old can come together as one.  Te Kāhui Rangatahi is looking for pathways to engage the generations in discussion.

Whati Ratu says, “We are trying to strengthen the dialogue between youth and the elderly, and we hope to do that by attending events such as poukai celebrations.”

Te Kāhui Rangatahi has attended over 12 poukai celebrations this year alone, creating relationships with the home people of the many marae to discuss the history of the Kīngitanga openly and safely, and as Ratu says we must prepare for tomorrow, today.

“Our aim is to ensure that the information from our ancestors are passed down.  We hope to walk in the footsteps of our elders from yester-year and those today, knowing that we will be the leaders of tomorrow,” Ratu explains.

The group has looked into many forms of communication, from books to email.  Team member Kirimaku Kihi says that an area of concern is getting youth back to their own marae.

“Our role is to attend poukai, and demonstrate this type of art work for youth and for those who are interested in this form of communication,” says Ms Kihi.

A key area Te Kāhui Rangatahi hope to create is conversation between generations, from children at kōhanga to the leaders on the paepae.

“My role is to bring our kōhanga reo to learn prophecies from the kings, here at the poukai,” says Maata Turner.

For two years the group has voluntarily committed to Kīngitanga, and once all the activities are complete, Te Kāhui Rangatahi hand over the gifts to the home people of the marae.