Impact Report 2020-2021

Cultural Connections

POET camps give rangatahi an opportunity to connect to the mauri of the natural and cultural worlds. In a recent camp, Paeroa College Year 13’s had some great experiences connecting to the people and the place of Kawhia.


We started camp with a powhiri onto Maketu marae, and then took a journey from the harbor to the hot water beach. Our local guides taught us the tikanga of this area and showed us the Pohutukawa tree the Tainui waka was tied up to, as well as its final resting place.


Students formed deep connections to the environment through swimming at the beaches, paddling and fishing in the harbor, and their hikoi from harbor to coastline. They also made great connections with the people through shared sunrise karakia each morning with the locals, and by running a well-organized afternoon play session at the local primary school.


A highlight of the camp was sailing on the Hinemoana, a replica of a traditional double-hulled voyaging waka. Students got to help navigate, trim the sails, and steer on a replica of what some of their Tupuna would have sailed on when they originally arrived at Kawhia harbor on the Tainui waka.

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