E te motu e! Whakanuia te huringa tau motuhake 50 o te reo Māori me te mana whakaaweawe o te rōpū, Ngā Tamatoa, tihei mouri ora.
Te Kotahitanga o Te Atiawa, Ngāti Te Whiti and Puketapu hapū, the whānau of Hana Te Hemara, New Plymouth District Council and partners are proud to welcome Ngā Tamatoa and Te Reo Māori Society to Ngā Motu, to launch the I am Hana project and commemorate the 50th anniversary of the presentation of the Māori language petition to parliament.
From 30 August – 15 September, a five-storey mural of Hana Te Hemara (Te Atiawa, Ngāti Raukawa, Ngāi Tahu), a founding member of Ngā Tamatoa, will be painted by renowned artist Mr G on the exterior of the Puke Ariki Library in New Plymouth’s CBD.
The start of this large-scale mural opens a number of commemorative events in New Plymouth which ends with a community celebration at the mural site on King Street.
Te Kotahitanga o Te Atiawa Chair Liana Poutu (Te Atiawa, Taranaki, Ngāti Maniapoto), is honoured Ngā Tamatoa chose Ngā Motu to commemorate this important milestone.
“Hana Te Hemara epitomised what it is to be a strong and tenacious woman. Her courage, along with so many from Ngā Tamatoa during the 1970s, paved the way for the thriving kura kaupapa, kōhanga reo and te reo Māori movement we have today,” says Liana.
“We are unashamedly proud of Aunty Hana as a leader, a mother, a fashionista and a proud Puketapu wahine. E kaha tautoko ana mātou I tēnei kaupapa mīharo, ka tika!”
Co-chair of New Plymouth District Council’s Te Huinga Taumata, Howie Tamati (Te Atiawa, Ngāti Mutunga, Ngāi Tahu), reflects on how Ngā Tamatoa and their legacy has shaped the resurgence of te reo Māori in Aotearoa.
“I am proud that my moko live in a time when they hear te reo Māori as art of their everyday lives, on the news, on social media. It is a testament to the mahi of Ngā Tamatoa and Hana Te Hemara. The I am Hana project is a wonderful way to honour her and the group’s commitment to the survival of our language,” says Howie.
“It’s an honour to be part of bringing Hana’s story to life in this way for Taranaki residents and I am sure the mural on the Puke Ariki Library building is going to look stunning, be a real drawcard and an immense source of pride for her iwi, hapū and whānau.”
I am Hana is proudly partnered by Te Kotahitanga o Te Atiawa, Ngāti Te Whiti, Puketapu, New Plymouth District Council, Creative New Zealand, Te Taura Whiri, Te Puni Kōkiri, Tui Ora, Venture Taranaki, Te Mātāwai, Toi Foundation, Spark and Nikau Construction.
Learn more about Hana Te Hemara, Ngā Tamatoa and see all I am Hana event information here: IamHana.nz.
The I am Hana project thank Creative New Zealand for funding this significant Hana Te Hemara mural.