Te Mātāwai Heralds a new era in iwi-Māori led te reo revitalisation

Pānui Pāpāho

Te Mātāwai Board has welcomed the opportunity to meet with the Māori Affairs Select Committee in Parliament today and acknowledges the role the Committee had in supporting the new Māori Language Act which established Te Mātāwai.

“Having an independent entity representing iwi and Māori interests in the revitalisation of te reo Māori heralds a significant change in the landscape, particularly around leadership,” says Waihoroi Shortland, Te Mātāwai Hoa-Toihau.

With a Board made up of seven iwi and four sector elected representatives, and two Ministerial appointments Te Mātāwai is geared to engage progressively at a range of levels with an ultimate goal to restore te reo Māori as a nurturing first language in the home.

“We have a clear vision from iwi and Māori regarding te reo Māori revitalisation as outlined in detail in our Maihi Māori Strategy. Kia ūkaipō anō te reo,” says Waihoroi.

“It’s about leadership, it’s about inclusiveness and it’s about making a real change that is felt in our homes and communities. Te Mātāwai is here to make a difference alongside our iwi, hapū, whānau and community stakeholders,” he says.

Te Mātāwai will receive an annual appropriation of $14.8 million, the majority of which goes directly towards much needed Māori language revitalisation investments, research, leadership and monitoring.

“We communicated the details of our Maihi Māori Strategy, our audacious goals, our outcomes and our approach to learn how to integrate te reo Māori into everyday life from our iwi/Māori perspective,” says Te Atarangi Whiu, Te Mātāwai Tumu Whakarae.

“For the most part select committee members were very receptive and eager to hear more about our strategy and approach in this new era of te reo Māori revitalisation,” she says.