Māori Tikanga Wananga ... a great way to re-connect with Tikanga and kawa

by Eugene Wikitera

  Eugene Wikitera in the middle led the maurakau (taiha)

Eugene Wikitera in the middle led the maurakau (taiha)

Ko Tainui te waka
Ko Waikato te awa
Ko Rangitoto te maunga
Ko Ngāti Maniapoto te iwi
Ko Rereahu te hapu
Ko Aharoa te marae
Ko Anderson taku whanau
No Te Kuiti ahau

Ka whai e au Manganui a te Ao
Ki tōku turuturu ki te kotihitihi o te Kahui Maunga.
Marama te titiro ki te Ao karere mai nei,
Mai Te Puru ki Tuhua ki te Matapihi,
mai te Kahui Maunga ki Tai.
Ka rere kau mai te awa nei,
Ko au te awa, ko te awa ko au

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Ruapehu te maunga
Ko te Turi o Murimotu te taumata
Whanganui te awa
Aotea te waka
Te Atihaunui a Paparanginui te iwi
Ngāti Rangi te hapu
Tuhiariki te Marae
Ko Paerangi ahau

Ko Eugene taku ingoa

 

 

Kia ora my name is Eugene Wikitera and I would like to share a little about me and my experience being involved with Maori Tikanga Wananga run by Te Piki Oranga in partnership with New Zealand Corrections.

Firstly, a brief description of myself; I lost my way as a teen doing little crimes up until the age of 18. A violent past saw me in jail for 10 years of my now 38 years. Since going to jail in 1998, it was also the last time I would see any family. The loss of those years made adjusting to a modern-day society very hard with the new fast paced lifestyle, other than the routine of a prison regime. I will have been out of jail for 10 years this September. The previous ten years have not been easy with minor charges resulting in three sentences, which gave me the opportunity to attend the Maori Tikanga Wananga run by Te Piki Oranga.

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I have always been proud to be Maori. I was brought up with stories of my ancestors and morals taught to me by my elders. I made bad choices and the Maori Tikanga Wananga that Te Piki Oranga provide is a great way to re-connect with tikanga and kawa. The course for me gave me back what I had lost so long ago which was my identity. A proud Maori with a sense of belonging.

I have recently attended the Maori Tikanga Wananga held at Waikawa Marae but this time as a kaiako (tutor). The opportunity that I have been given by Te Piki Oranga and especially their Pou Taki (Sonny Alesana) to share my mau rākau/taiaha skills and my life story with participants. I hope my story and experience will inspire others to make changes in their lives. I know that I am not a teacher but experiences that I have picked up in the Maori Tikanga Wananga has given me a positive outlook for the future.

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