August 09, 2022
Te Hapori Hōiho new home for Māori equestrians
The new National Māori Horse Association – Te Hapori Hōiho is being flooded with people wanting to join up.
Spokesperson Michelle Lee says Māori have 200 years of history with horses.
She says there are some big issues the roopuu can address, such as finding ways to support talented rangatahi who otherwise drop out of equine sports because of cost or isolation, getting recognition for top-level Māori breeders, and getting involved in the management of wild horses.
There is a huge range of Māori participation in the sector but connecting it is critical to keeping traditions alive.
“We have our people in rodeo. Then we have a handful of our people in dressage and showjumping and so on but you get so entrenched in the different genres of horsemanship that our people become marginalised in terms of our specific Māori horse culture and being able to showcase that in those places so by forming the National Māori Horse Association we are wanting to join our people together no matter what discipline they are in,” Ms Lee says.
She says it’s also a chance to develop reo hōiho and tikanga hōiho.