Pā Haka - A call home for Kahungunu descendants

By Renee Kahukura-Iosefa

Numerous benefits have come out of the recent Pā Haka event held at Takitimu Marae in Wairoa, most important though is the revitalisation of the Kahungunu dialect and push for Kahungunu and Rongomaiwahine orators across the region's marae.

Eleven marae gathered in support of the third Pā Haka event.

Organiser Kitea Tipuna says, “This is a great event for us, it's all about family coming together.  The calling was for our families from Wairoa living outside the region to come home to help reignite the home fires of our marae."

Pā Haka provides an opportunity for each marae to express their hopes and aspirations by sharing their stories through song and dance in a non-competitive environment. 

They are also able to strengthen relationships between each of the marae encouraging whānau to engage and reconnect with their marae.

Grace Tahuri, who travelled home to Wairoa from Auckland, says, “This event is very important to us of Kahungunu.  The Pā Haka provides the opportunity to revitalise our Kahungunu dialect which is important to all tribes ensuring that our language lives on.  To everyone who has gathered here, I encourage you all to be strong and go forth in keeping our language alive for future generations to come.”

The Pā Haka is held every two years at Takitumu Marae in Wairoa.