Tāhuri Whenua hui

On 14 July, Ōtākou was fortunate to host Nick Roskruge, Alby Marsh, and Richard Hunter from Tāhuri Whenua (national Māori vegetable growers), who came down to discuss their latest projects and lead discussion around Māori māra kai.

This was an absolutely fantastic hui, and the vast majority left full of enthusiasm and ideas for their own māra, and for our māra at the marae. There was a lot of discussion around taewa (Māori potatoes), which was relevant due to the revitalisation of an old variety found growing wild on the Ōkia side of Pukehau! The office received some seed stock of this variety, which has been called Ōtākou, and we’re looking forward to having abundant harvests of this particular taewa in the future!

Tahuri Whenua hui.

Building – wharekai

Our wharekai extensions are moving along quickly! To date, a lot of the services have been installed, and the building is starting to take shape. We have been fortunate that even with inclement weather at times, there have been no major hold ups, and we look forward to a new Hākuiao being completed by early next year!

Not only are the office staff enjoying the activity on a daily basis, so are the rabbits. A large mound of soil from the earth movers was left in front of the office one day, by the next, the rabbits had created a palace and moved in!

Fundraising efforts

So far the fundraising effort has been impressive and we have drawn on over $1m of our own funds as well as received support from Te Rūnanga o Ngāi Tahu and the Ngāi Tahu Fund with their new capital development programme. Lotteries New Zealand, via the marae heritage fund, have also made a significant contribution and so have Te Puni Kōkiri.

This funding has supported everything from the project scoping and planning phases, to the engagement of project managers and, more recently for the actual build phase. But we still need more funds. Our funding shortfall as at July is $660,000. All koha to our building fund are gratefully received!

Our account details are as follows:
Te Rūnanga o Ōtākou
01 0902 00069111 046 (ANZ).