National | Fund

Professor Rangi Mātāmua encourages whānau to 'call their people home' for Matariki

Matariki celebrations are to receive a boost from a government fund set up to strengthen community understanding of the special occasion which marks the start of the Māori New Year.

The Matariki Ahunga Nui fund - administered by the Ministry for Culture and Heritage under the guidance of Professor Rangiānehu Mātāmua - will distribute up to $3 million to support Māori communities lead initiatives recognising not only the public holiday but also the wider kaupapa of Matariki.

"When you think about Matariki, you should think of going home to celebrate, feast, and spend time with whānau and friends," said Professor Mātāmua, the chief advisor mātauranga Matariki. "I want to encourage applicants this year to call their people home."

"This fund is about strengthening relationships and bonds while honouring those we have lost since the last rising of Matariki, gathering together to give thanks for what we have and to look forward to the promise of a brighter new year," he said.

Applications close on May 21, 2023.

This year the public holiday is on Friday, July 14.