Midland Maori Leaders Recognised

Turaukawa Bartlett is a member of Te Huinga o nga Pou Hauora the Midland Māori Leadership Network and chair of the Midland Workforce Strategy Network.  He has been an instrumental bringing fresh perspective to mental health and addiction and an enthusiasm that rubs off on his peers.  Here is his reflection of the past year working alongside the Midland Mãori leaders.

Maori Leaders
Back row (L-R) Matua Tau Moeke, Turaukawa Bartlett
Second row (L-R) Belinda Walker, Laurie Hakiwai, Phyllis Tangtiu, Terry Huriwai, Libby Moeke & Eseta Nonu-Reid
Front row (L-R) Stacey Porter, Hine Moeke-Murray & Steve Neale
Absent: Kiri Peita, Marita Ranclaud, Pania Hetet & Wi Te Tau Huata

What does Tuakana-teina look like in 2018?

As I reflect back on the last year and my journey alongside these inspirational Māori hauora leaders, I struggle to find words in English to describe the intense and overwhelming sense of pride and humility I feel as we wrap up for the year. It’s not until I turn to te ao Māori that I find my answer.

Tuakana-teina - The older generation teaches the younger generation.

A year ago I joined this group with nothing but a mouth as big as my eyebrows, and a dream to drive real change in the wellbeing outcomes of te iwi Māori – I was scared!

After the first hui, and having realised that I hadn’t really contributed anything, I couldn’t believe that I was asked to come back! At the second hui, I chose to simply embrace the vulnerability and be my true self; it was then that I realised the essence of what was actually happening.

Like a seed I was being nurtured under the protection of great tōtara; the years of experience, mātauranga and manaakitanga woven together with the thread of manaakitanga to form a korowai of aroha.

Over time, the warmth of this korowai helped foster and refine the rough edges, and my chaotic passion soon became…… less chaotic. From scared to now being ready to stand on my own two feet, I stand here as a grateful teina of whom will one day become a tuakana for the next generation.

Mā te kaitiakitanga a te tuakana, ka tū rangatira te teina – With the support of the older generations, the young will stand strong.

The Midland region thanks Turaukawa for his contribution to the sector, we look forward to working with him into the new year ahead.


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