E Tū Whānau competition inspires positive change

By Te Kuru o te Marama Dewes

E Tū Whānau believe in the power of music to capture hearts and minds, and to inspire change. They're behind a competition that calls for original songs by Māori across the country.

Paenoa Pahuru-Huriwai (Ngāti Porou), says, “I've been at school here, I've been away from home for two years. I long for my homelands. This song is for me to address my longing for home.”

The competition accepts entries through iwi radio stations and the winners will be played by iwi radio stations throughout the country.

E Tū Whānau spokesperson Brent Mio says, “Māori radio stations are a vessel for us to deliver to everyone in the country.”

Entrants are required to write an original song that inspires positive change incorporating one or more of the E Tū Whānau values (i.e. Compassion, Connectedness, Family, Pride/Respect, Kōrero Awhi and Tradition.

General Manager of Radio Ngāti Porou, Erana Keelan-Reedy says, “This is a medium to transmit those songs to broadcast to pierce the minds of the masses to influence change amongst families so that those families and their descendants will benefit.”

With 54 entries so far, the enthusiasm of young Māori to write songs that encourage and uplift whānau is clear.

Paenoa Pahuru-Huriwai says, “I'm passionate about singing.”

Entries closed today at 5 pm. People can view them on the E Tū Whānau Song Competition Facebook page, and vote for their favourites every day until voting closes on Monday, June 5 at 5 pm.