Young parents share their experiences raising newborn babies in the Māori language in the 13-part HURŌ PĒPI premiering on Māori Television tonight – Thursday 25 March 2021 – at 7.30 PM.

Rangatahi language enthusiasts Stevie Davis-Tana and partner Nathaniel Howe realised that topical content around Māori parenting practices from a youth perspective was virtually non-existent.

The Auckland couple were expecting their first child, Hawaiki, at the time.

Stevie – writer, presenter and star of the first episode of HURŌ PĒPI – says there was an overwhelming amount of online resources about parenthood but hardly any of it was by or for Māori.

“Nat and I realised that if we were feeling a bit lost or confused, there must be so many other young parents out there in the same waka,” the 26-year-old explains.

“So we thought, why not row this waka together? 

“If we want to help create better lives and futures for our pēpi, if we want to help change the narrative and the negative statistics, then let's start with better equipping our whānau with the knowledge and skills that we need to raise healthy and happy pēpi.”

Up-and-coming filmmaker Nathaniel – co-founder of award-winning Maimoa Music and producer/director of HURŌ PĒPI – says there are many other rangatahi Māori who are part of what seems to be a ‘lockdown baby boom’.

“While we hold high aspirations for our next generation, we can start to affect positive change by giving our own babies the love and care they deserve.

“We hope that HURŌ PĒPI is a positive and light-hearted watch for our new or soon-to-be parents across Aotearoa – we hope to bring smiles, enjoyment and a bit of fun to our māmā and pāpā who are doing their best to raise the next generation of Māori language speakers.”

Coming up in HURŌ PEPĪ:
EPISODE 1 – THURSDAY 25 MARCH AT 7.30 PM: Meet the creators of HURŌ PĒPI, Nathaniel and Stevie, as they prepare to bring Hawaiki into the world.

EPISODE 2 – THURSDAY 1 APRIL AT 7.30 PM: A Māori Vietnamese baby is not your usual mix of cultures but D’angelo and Hailey seem to have figured out the magic formula. 

EPISODE 3 – THURSDAY 8 APRIL AT 7.30 PM: He first fell in love after watching her perform at Te Matatini; 18 months later, Montel and Rangiatea have a happy reo Māori pēpi together.

EPISODE 4 – THURSDAY 15 APRIL AT 7.30 PM: She chased him when they studied at Waikato University – now Uenuku and Rangipare can introduce their pēpi to the world.

EPISODE 5 – THURSDAY 22 APRIL AT 7.30 PM: Making mixed whānau work: Wharehuia and Puawai see their new pēpi as the glue in their loving family.

EPISODE 6 – THURSDAY 29 APRIL AT 7.30 PM: Māori language, culture and kapa haka is what attracted Tukaiora and Bailey to each other – now they get to raise a little haka baby!

EPISODE 7 – THURSDAY 6 MAY AT 7.30 PM: Shifting from the city to country town Te Kaha is no sweat for Matekitātahi and Te Marino now that Tairukupōtaka grows up in his homeland.

EPISODE 8 – THURSDAY 13 MAY AT 7.30 PM: It was a challenge for Jo and Heneriata to have a baby so young but it has not stopped them from achieving their goals – and bringing a second into the world.

EPISODE 9 – THURSDAY 20 MAY AT 7.30 PM: What started off as school yard teasing has blossomed into Cody finally ‘scoring’ Harlem and having a pēpi together – but there’s an unexpected twist to their story.

HURŌ PĒPI premieres on Māori Television tonight – Thursday 25 March – at 7.30 PM.

For images, interviews or further information, contact:

Kirk MacGibbon
Mātanga Tuku Kōrero / Communications Specialist
Maori Television
DDI: 09 539 7159
MOB: 021 20 33 777