Regional | Reo

80% of Waikato-Tainui uri to be fluent in Te Reo by 2050

Rāhui Papa, chairman of Waikato-Tainui tribal executive Te Arataura, believes eighty percent of iwi members will be fluent in Te Reo Māori by 2050.

He says, “Strengthening our tribal reo and tikanga to a high level of fluency is a key area of focus for the tribe.”

Papa shared this comment ahead of the launch of Tikanga Ora Reo Ora ­– the tribe’s reo strategy outlining how it will support iwi members to become confident and fluent Te Reo Māori speakers.

"Tikanga Ora Reo Ora was developed through a combined effort with Waikato-Tainui kaumātua and the tribe’s Reo Advisory Group. It sets a clear objective – that 80% of Waikato-Tainui iwi members will be fluent in our tribal reo and tikanga by 2050 – an ambitious, but achievable goal.”

A host of initiatives will be introduced this year, including online learning tools for tamariki; an NZQA accredited Te Reo Māori programme; wānanga reo and a professional development programme for reo Māori teachers.

“The power of language is truly transformative and with the implementation of these initiatives we aim to reach a level where our tribal reo is embedded as an everyday language in our whānau and marae.

Not only will its regular use ensure our tribal reo is preserved for future generations, but our people will develop a stronger sense of self, tribal pride and a deeper understanding of who they are,” Papa says.

Tikanga Ora Reo Ora will launch this weekend at the Waikato-Tainui Games in Hopuhopu.