Becoming a tauira of Te Korowai Aroha’s Mauriora 2013 course was one of the best decisions I’ve ever made in my life. The teachings and learnings gained at every noho throughout the year have allowed me to add positive contributions in all areas of my whanau, marae, haapori, hapu and iwi engagement. Most importantly, in my current role as a youth mentor supporting rangatahi and their whanau within my own community.
When hope is lost and the ability to dream sounds like a foreign language to our uncertain youth and their whanau; the imperatives, principals and practicums set out in this course not only opened my own eyes and ears to the abundance of matauranga left by our tupuna, it set me in good stead to becoming a more assertive coach, and kaiwhakarurhau to my people. It also prepared me to detect and scent out the adversary when dealing with ways of dysfunction, oppression, racism, imposter tikanga, and false illusions of being.
One poignant transformation would have to be the Decolonisation workshops. A Noho that I will never forget and have forever etched those awakenings into the way I see the people I serve. My hope for Te Korowai Aroha is that it continues to spread it’s empowering teachings to all who desire to work with whanau , hapu and iwi.
Mauriora - Leon Wharekura
Leon Wharekura - Iwi Kaiwhakaruruhau Graduate 2013
My name is Josephine (JoJo) Apanui I am a Kaiarahi Social Worker for my Iwi of Whakatohea and I began my journey with Te Korowai O Aotearoa in 2015 when I enrolled on the Mauri Ora Programme. I joined the programme hoping to enhance my practice with whanau. But the programme impacted me on both a professional and personal level.
My kaiako for Mauri Ora was the late Jozie Karanga and Jason Mareroa and later on Maudy Tupe and Mikaera Pou. The entire programme was life-changing in how I approached my mahi and how I approached my whanau. 3 years down the track I live and breathe the concepts of Mauri Ora.
If I were to quote what Mauri Ora was about, it would be to quote Jozie Karanga, that it was “dispelling the illuision.” The illusion of living and breathing in a pakeha world as a kaimahi. By the normalisation and acculturation of pakeha processes as opposed to the ancient practices of our tipuna which kept whanau together, thriving. It was about repatriation as a Maori to my whanau, hapu and Iwi. It is about understanding the violations that were imposed upon us as a people and recognizing and rebuking the practices that are inherent in a pakeha whare.
Most importantly it gave me skills to navigate my way through the suicide of my 21 year old daughter. I honestly do not believe I could have made my way through the loss if not for the skills I learned with Te Korowai Aroha O Aotearoa. Mauri Ora gives you the strength to face adversity, to face all negativity that comes to you and and walk through it with the coping mechanisms to make positive changes for myself, my whanau and the whanau I serve in the community.
Jo Apanui - Whakatohea, Ngai Tuhoe
2015 Graduated Mauri Ora
2016 Graduated Turanga Whanau
2018 Enrolled on Te Paeaarahi Whakatipu Rangatira
Enrolled on Matua Whangai
Jo Apanui - Whakatohea, Ngai Tuhoe 2015