March 03, 2023
Māori inspiration noted in recreation awards
A Marlborough social enterprise that works to connect Maori with their whakapapa and Hauora through the natural environment has won the Maori outcomes section of Recreation Aotearoa’s 2022 New Zealand Outdoor Awards.
Hawaiki Kura specialises in delivering cultural wellness wānanga for the community and tāngata Māori.
The environmental leadership award went for the second year in a row to Discover Waitomo, who are the operators and kaitiaki of the Waitomo Glowworm Cave, Ruakuri Cave, and Aranui Cave.
Judges said they are world leaders in the conservation space with an environmental team on hand, extensive climate monitoring systems, and environmental education programmes.
The supreme award for leadership on outdoor recreation went to the Mike Elkington, the lead kaiako Māori at Nelson’s Whenua Iti Outdoors, for his efforts to lift the mana of tamariki and rangatahi by teaching them that it’s not just ‘okay’ to be Māori, but that its ‘exceptional’ to be Māori and to be proud of their whakapapa.