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May 1, 2017 | by  | in Ngāi Tauira |
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Te Ara Tauira

Last month, Ngāi Tauira hosted Pūrangiaho, an annual event designed to bring our tauira Māori together, and for us all to learn about the history of Māori at Vic. First year student Pounamu Chambers lets us know exactly what banter went down this year:

On the first night we were told that only one Pou or carving in the wharenui at the marae is native Tōtara wood. Only a few people know which one it is and I am determined to find it before I leave Victoria. Hearing the history of the wharenui and all the work that went into getting the marae where it is today was beautiful privilege. Learning the waiata of Ngāi Tauira was also another highlight. I had heard them before, but never knew any of the words.

Pūrangiaho was such a meke thing to be a part of. It was a time to make the connection we all needed to make to feel fully a part of the whanau and a part of the Māori student body at university. It was an event that connected us all as a whanau and connected us with the marae here on campus. It was so cool hearing about all the Māori support networks and rōpū Victoria has to offer, and the whakapapa and energy that was put into all of them.

Going into the noho, we started as friends, sleeping next to each other and all, but not necessary knowing much about each other. However, when we left the noho we were whānau sharing laughs, sharing blankets and even soap (too far??). It was such a cool weekend and I am so pleased I was a part of it. Getting through university in a dominantly Pākehā environment, I think it is essential to have the whanau I have found here.

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