Ōrākei whānau endure positively despite tangihanga during lockdown

By Bronson Perich, Tapatahi

A whānau in Ōrākei have kept their spirits strong despite losing one of their own during the lockdown. Ariana Pauls’ father passed, and her partner, Tama Potaka has seen his fathers’ health decline. 

“There are some silver lining I guess, and the order that is, that wairua has kept us strong and very healthy.

“Tikanga evolves in a way that allows us to still grieve and to heal.”

Tama Potaka weighed in, saying that they have worked on maintaining balance.

“For us, it’s trying to create the right balance and the right stability, within that hauora kaupapa, within that kaupapa framework.”

So eating right, exercising, keeping in touch with whānau, friends and staying spiritually grounded is part of the whānau regimen.

Potaka went on, to talk about how they, as a whānau have prepared for Anzac Day. He described how they taught their tamariki about the Pioneer Battalion of the Great War and the 28th (Māori) Battalion that fought in the Second World War.

“We’ve talked about some, let’s call it ‘Anzac 101’ and inevitably that involved the Anzac biscuits, and the manaakitanga that was showed by a lot of our wāhine.”

The whānau discussion included the Gallipoli campaign from the Turkish perspective. It also included remembering their tīpuna that had fought in subsequent campaigns such as Korea, Malaya and Borneo.