20 March 2020

A message from the Pou Amorangi/Chair of Te Rūnanga o te Wānanga Amorangi

Kia hiwa rā! kia hiwa rā! Kia matara! He pānui waiwai tēnei mō tātou katoa. 
Be watchful, focused and alert! This is a vital announcement for us all. 

The deadly influenza epidemic of 1918 swept through New Zealand over a two month period and was the worst disease outbreak in living memory. It caused the loss of many New Zealanders' lives, including Māori who were eight times more vulnerable than Pākehā. Urgent changes were implemented in those rural communities to mitigate the further spread of the flu. With the recent swine flu and the measles outbreak in Samoa (and New Zealand), we are facing a similar situation today that needs a quick response. 

We endorse compliance and sustained compliance of the corona virus Government health notices that are required of us now. It will take a lot of voluntary effort and individual behaviour to get us through this season. 

In line with the Government advice in regards to tikanga Māori and gatherings we ask whānau to cancel mass gatherings and refrain from gathering at non-essential hui on marae and other spaces with 100 people or more, to limit community transmission of COVID-19, and to protect the vulnerable. See this link for more information: https://covid19.govt.nz/help-a... 

We ask that you suspend traditional forms of close physical contact greetings, such as awhi (hug, embrace), hongi (pressing noses), harirū (shaking hands), and kihi (kissing) and use alternative forms of greeting like: te mihi-ā-tukemata (raising of eyebrows); the elbow to elbow greeting; waving; or using the Aihu or hā mamao long distance hongi where you use your finger to hongi a salute without touching your nose. See Scotty Morrison’s explanation: https://www.facebook.com/stace... 

Be aware of your fellow students and neighbours’ situation. While isolation and restriction on gatherings are required, this will add pressure on staff, students and whānau. Isolation is not alienation. Don’t forget to reach out to each other, to your whānau, your kaumatua and kuia, and to those around us who are vulnerable in our community. It is an opportunity to karakia (pray) and share God’s love in action. Check on each other and make sure each other’s needs are nurtured, particularly with the provision of food and water for households. 

We encourage you with this scripture not to be fearful of the world and this situation; 

Philippians 4:6-7 
Kaua e manukanuka ki tetahi mea; engari i nga mea katoa whakaaturia ki te Atua nga mea e matea ai e koutou, i runga i te karakia, i te inoi, me te whakawhetai hoki. A ma te marie o te Atua, e kore nei e taea te whakaaro, e tiaki o koutou ngakau, o koutou hinengaro, i roto i a Karaiti Ihu. 

Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus. 

Kia tau te mauri o Ihowa o ngā mano, 

Nāku noa, nā 

Bradford Haami