Te Taiwhenua o Heretaunga has been on a journey for many years. This hīkoi has seen us start out slow, grow and develop to where we are now. We invite you to learn more about our origins.
As part of a national Māori renaissance, triggered in the 1970's
by Māori rights protests and land marches, the strategic view of
Heretaunga whānui was that government services for Māori were
better delivered by Māori for Māori.
The devolution of Government services in the late 1980's, early
1990's resulted in a new Ngāti Kahungunu Iwi structure aimed at
building capacity and capability, develop proactive initiatives and
opportunities addressing Māori needs and aspirations.
The vision for the future of Ngāti Kahungunu ki Heretaunga was
formed through the drive of its founding members and key kaumatua
of the time such as Wi Te Tau Huata, Eru Smith, Eparaima Rawiri
Kamau, Ringahora Ybel Huata, Ruruhira Robyn, Te Okanga Huata and
The organisation now known as Taiwhenua o Heretaunga Trust was
incorporated in its original structure on the 19th day of September
1985 and was the first legally formed Taiwhenua within Ngāti
In 1988 the Trust functioned through Rūnanga based on key areas
of the Trust's objects. Each Rūnanga had three members and
nominated one to the Taiwhenua Executive. In 1992
restructuring took place and dispensed with the election of Rūnanga
Boards and instead developed a 'management group' including a
chairperson, vice-chairperson, secretary and treasurer to function
as a 'coordinating committee' on three main areas, namely Kete
Huruhuru (Economic Development), Kete Wānanga (Education), and Kete
Whānau (Social Development). The 1992 Board included: Ngahiwi
Tomoana (Chairperson), Alayna Watene (Vice-Chair, Coordinator), Bob
Timu (Secretary), Marei Apatu (Treasurer), Waipa Te Rito
(Coordinator), and Manu Vercoe (Coordinator).
In the 1990's the first steps of Te Taiwhenua o Heretaunga were
taken from a converted tractor shed with marae based MACCESS
courses. With a view to the future, the organisation
took a Mana Enterprise loan and invested in shares. Dividends
from the shares formed Te Taiwhenua o Heretaunga's capital
Growth continued throughout the decade with more services being
delivered from multiple sites in Heretaunga, the purchase of the
future Heretaunga Park property and the establishment of a medical
and dental centre at Portsmouth Road.
In 1997 Te Rūnanga o Ngāti Kahungunu became Ngāti Kahungunu Iwi
Incorporated and undertook a constitutional review resulting in
each Taiwhenua aligning their own trust deeds and constitutions to
the Iwi structure, resulting in Marae/ Hapū and Mataa Waka
representation on Te Taiwhenua o Heretaunga Board of Trustees.
Te Taiwhenua o Heretaunga wanted to ensure Heretaunga hapū were
maximising access to all opportunities; therefore mandated members
from all Heretaunga Marae were elected to the Te Haaro Board of
Trustees, the new governance model resulting from a trust deed
review in 2000.
With leaps and bounds Te Taiwhenua o Heretaunga services grew
exponentially from the year 2000 onwards. With over 150
staff and a centralised base at Heretaunga Park Community Complex,
we deliver a broad range of 'wrap-around' services to all corners
of Heretaunga, from Marae to urban centres, pēpe to kaumatua, those
in need and those who choose kaupapa Māori services.
The Hīkoi Continues
In preparation for the coming decade and beyond in 2009/2010 we
entered strategic partnerships for community development,
consolidated existing services, built capability for new services,
and invested in staff capacity to support Māori aspirations and
continue to uphold our mission 'Mauri ora ki te mana Māori o