Horowhenua - Celebrating Te Wiki o te Reo Māori - Maori language week.
Te Wiki o te Reo Māori celebrates and promotes te Reo Maori as one of the national languages of New Zealand, and Horowhenua is joining the fun.
Horowhenua District Council and Muapoko Tribal Authority have partnered to offer a range of interactive online events between Friday 28 August and Sunday 20 September 2020, with prizes up for grabs during Māori Language Week from Monday 14 September to Sunday 20 September.
Libraries Horowhenua will also join in, using te Reo in displays, activities and greetings at library venues and on social media.
Horowhenua District Council's Cultural Outcomes Lead Aroha Pakau said the interactive events were designed to bring people together.
"We wanted to build connections between people at a time when we have to stay physically distanced from each other. We've put together an online programme of activities everyone can enjoy to celebrate and learn about Maori language and culture," she said.
There is an online shout out challenge to show us your pūkana, where friends and whānau are encouraged to get together, shout out to someone and then show us their pukana.
A second online challenge offers the chance to design your own face mask with any design to be in with a chance to win.
To encourage a more musical note to the week, a song and rap competition challenges our local singers and songwriters to write a short verse with the phrase 'Kia kaha te Reo Māori' included.
All challenges come with a prize of a $50 New World voucher for the winning entries.
In recognition of the 'Maori language moment' to be celebrated at midday on Monday 14 September, Horowhenua District Council will broadcast a live stream waiata on its Facebook page, with residents of the district encouraged to participate at home, at work, or wherever you may be!
Mrs Pakau said Te Wiki o Te Reo Māori is a great time to take the opportunity to learn Te Reo Māori.
"Tetaurawhiri.govt.nz has some great resources and our activities are designed to encourage people to speak the language - I encourage everyone, especially our tamariki and rangatahi, to give them a go. Let's go Horowhenua, Kia kaha te Reo Maori.
Sillena McGregor, Muapoko Tribal Authority Board Member, encouraged Horowhenua to give te Reo Māori a go.
"Te Reo Māori is our native language and we as a people strive to protect and maintain it. Te Wiki o Te Reo Māori is an opportunity for us to promote the everyday use of Reo Maori over the week and we are excited for the activities planned in our rohe. It doesn't matter how much or little you can speak - the main thing is to give it a go, Horowhenua! Kia kaha te Reo Maori."