Whānau Yesterday, Today, Tomorrow

Date published
4 Aug 2011
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A new report by the Families Commission, highlights stories of inspirational whānau.

Whānau Yesterday, Today, Tomorrow draws on Māori knowledge, cultural practices and methods to research stories of whānau success. Informed by the integrated nature of Māori knowledge, this paper addresses social, economic, cultural and environmental aspects of whānau development.

The report concentrates on the period often referred to as the time of the Māori renaissance, 1975 to the present. This was a period of significant cultural, social and economic development.
The report includes chapters on:

  • explorations of whānau
  • a demographic and statistical profile of whānau from 1975 to the present
  • research design, methods and issues
  • whānau as custodians of culture: the Winitana whānau and the story of Ahorangi Genesis
  • whānau as kaitiaki of the environment: the Maranga Waitaha project
  • the role and status of Māori language and knowledge in economic transformation: case studies of Boy, Kia Kaha, Kaitaia Fire and Raukuri
  • Māori women as advocates of whānau development: interviews with Dame Iritana Tawhiwhirangi, Dr Rose Pere, Areta Koopu, Barbara Greer, Moe Milne, Naida Glavish, Dr Katerina Mataira, Dr Paparangi Reid, Mereana Pitman, Dr Khyla Russell and Ngaropi Cameron.

In the concluding chapter the findings of the research are analysed in the context of the changing role of the Families Commission. The question ‘what is Māori about whānau?’ is explored in the socio-political context of Aotearoa’s journey towards nationhood. An analysis of Māori development during the Māori renaissance is presented which identifies critical success factors for whānau development and whānau ora. Matemateone, a profound driver of Māori development, provides the concluding exploration of mātauranga Māori in this report. This concept helps to understand the connection that whānau have with the past, their engagement in the present and the hope created amongst them about the future and planning for it.

Last update: 10 Jun 2015