80% of Waikato-Tainui to speak Te Reo fluently by 2050

By Taroi Black

Waikato-Tainui has launched a 2050 initiative to have 80% of Tainui speak te reo fluently.

Waikato-Tainui board member Rahui Papa says the language handed down by their forefathers is integral to their tribal protocols, so ensuring that the descendants speak it is imperative, “Census is saying only 31% of our iwi are speaking te reo fluently, but we don't believe that's true because there's so much more to also consider.” 

Education within the region will get a boost of $2.8mil and te reo Māori will be part of that drive.

“We're hoping that every 5 years another 20% of our people know how to speak te reo, or they may show a bit of interest in te reo,” says Mr Papa.

Mr Papa also mentioned that this goal will be the biggest challenge for Waikato-Tainui living outside the region.