August 26, 2015
Papakainga vision drives kuia
A Northland kuia says housing people on their own land has been one of her most satisfying achievements.
Nora Rameka of Ngati Rehia, Ngati Kuri and Ngati Kaitangata was today made a Member of the Order of New Zealand at Government House in Auckland for services to Maori and education.
She says it’s always been a case of doing what needs to be done rather than looking for rewards.
In 1989 Mrs Rameka started pushing to create a papakainga north of Kerikeri at Takou Bay, the resting place of the Mataatua waka.
There are now 18 homes and 50 people there, as well as a marae and a public camping ground.
"So we keep striving because there are still barriers and there are still others who want to come home and that to me is the biggest driver. I want to see our people in good homes, back on their own land, and that thinking we can own our homes on our own land is one of my biggest aspirations for our people," Mrs Rameka says.
At the same session this morning, Auckland educationalist Tawhiri Williams from Ngai Tuhoe was also made a Member of the Order of New Zealand, and former Maori Affairs Minister Pita Sharples received his knighthood.
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