Ngāti Hine, Ngāti Kawa
He uri au o Ngāti Hine, i tupu au i raro i ngā rekereke o tōku maunga Motatau. Ko Ngāti Te Tarawa te hapū ririki. I te taha o tōku matua, nō Ngāti Kawa ia, ko Oromahoe me Waitangi ngā nohonga. I mīharo hoki nei i te tupu taha i ōku nei tūpuna, ko Paki rāua ko Pene Tipene. Like many of my generation my formal education was limited and impacted by being punished for speaking te reo Māori, my first language. I left school early working in a range of physical jobs, later turning my focus to outdoor education and youthwork. For the last 15 years I have worked in the field of mental health and well-being.
He Whakaputanga o te Rangatiratanga o Nū Tīreni
My journey with He Whakaputanga has been a personal one. I hold the memories of many tautohetohe, hikoi and wānanga. My upbringing with my grandparents meant I heard kōrero about te Tiriti from an early age, and each year we worked our farm to transport kai to the Waitangi commemorations. As I grew older and became more politically aware in the late 1970’s, I was privileged to sit alongside kaumātua who also spoke about He Whakaputanga, to be their driver, attend hui and listen to the kōrero I look forward to sharing stories of my experiences with kaumātua for whom He Whakaputanga was a live reality, and who met as he wakaminenga. I hold to the vision that was spoken of, ‘he whenua rangatira.’