Iwi wellbeing focus of eastern polytech's new poutāhu

By Te Ao - Māori News
Patrick Hape was interviewed for Te Ao in 2019.  Photo / File

EIT Te Aho a Māui's new executive director Māori, Patrick Hape, says he wants to see more resourcing brought into the Hawke's Bay-Tairāwhiti region to assist local Māori when planned government reforms to merge the Eastern Institute of Technology and 15 other polytechnics under one mega-polytech, Te Pūkenga, take effect in 2023.

“From an iwi perspective, I really want to make sure that they're looked after, that they’re brought in, and that the reforms are used to bring more opportunities to the iwi, from here to Tairāwhiti and beyond,” Hape, who is Ngāti Kahungunu and Ngāi Te Rangikoianake, said in a statement Saturday.

“Things like the Māori research area are also making good ground in terms of the work with iwi and hapū to empower them. It's being able to marry the two worlds together, the Māori world with the support and resources that are available at EIT."

EIT Te Aho a Māui poutāhu Patrick Hape.  Photo / Supplied

Hape started his role as poutāhu this month and says he sees himself as a “support pillar” for both EIT and local iwi and hapū.

“The organisation now appears to be in a position where it's hungry to do more. There is a lot of opportunity within an environment that is changing with the imminent reforms. I'm excited about the opportunities that the reform brings.”

Hape has been a senior consultant with Kāhui Tautoko Consulting Ltd since 2016. Based in Wellington, his recent focus has been as part of the hauora Māori team in the health transition unit focused on establishing the Māori Health Authority.

His experience has included working on health initiatives that support indigenous communities in New Zealand, Canada, and the United States, primarily in Hawai`i.