Offenders spend 300 hours restoring Okahu Urupā in Tauranga

  • Waikato/Bay of Plenty

Offenders serving sentences of community work in Tauranga have refurbished Okahu Urupā at Matapihi Marae. The project took 300 hours to complete.

The urupā became decrepit and required intensive work to get it back to its former state. Community Work crews constructed a fence, began mowing, clearing scrub and cleaning headstones.

The final part of the project was completed last weekend with the erection of a pātaka wai Māori at the entrance of the urupā.  

It took The Corrections Community Work Supervisor approximately 20 hours to complete. He put it together in his own time, using his own resources. 

A ceremony was held to recognise the completion of the project.

Tauranga Community Corrections Service Manager Nick Ferguson says, “Everyone in the crew was very positive about the project. We had some offenders with whānau and cultural links to the area and they were extremely proud of the work they did and how the urupa reflects the pride of the community.

It’s fantastic when we can align the work we do with the Department’s focus on strengthening cultural ties with the community and giving offenders the opportunity to give back to their own community.”