Hūhana Watene, TEU Tumu Āwhina, takes a look at one way of taking up the challenge of Te wiki o te reo Māori – incorporating our Union waiata into our daily communications.
TEU is proactive in regards to embedding kupu Māori and kaupapa Māori into the Union’s policies, media coverage, and activities. The whāinga is to provide a safe environment to learn, practice, and share.
As a Union we actively engage in te reo Māori, one of our official languages, by normalising its use ia rā but to be done, genuinely.
Why not start with using the key uara in our waiata in communications and conversations. The kupu of the Union’s waiata and karakia, written by kaumātua and kuia, assists members understanding of Māori principles and values that connect effortlessly with the Union’s values:
- · Tū kotahi, tū kaha – We are strong and unified; we are committed to actions
- · Ngā piki, ngā heke – We endure through good times and bad
- · Awhi atu, awhi mai – We take actions that seek to improve the lives of the most vulnerable
- · Tātou, tātou e – We reach our goals through our collective strength and shared sense of purpose.
Perhaps you might start a branch pānui with the heading “Tū kotahi, tū kaha.” During a conversation about the latest restructuring note we stay together through “ngā piki, ngā heke.” Or in bargaining meetings say “Tātou, tātou e, that’s how we will win.”
Tōku reo, tōku ohooho
Tōku reo, tōku māpihi maurea
Tōku reo, tōku whakakai marihi
My language is my cherished possession
My language is the object of my affection
My language is my precious adornment
We already have excellent whakatauākī and whakataukī to be guided by, so let’s get in there and give it a go – patua te whakamā!
Te tika, te pono, me te māramatanga
Be right, be genuine, so that enlightenment grows