Saturday, June 15, 2024

Imagining Decolonisation Wānanga in Pōneke

A three-day wānanga planned for Pōneke this month will be the setting for a think-tank, a call to action, workshops and kōrero around decolonisation in Aotearoa, according to Wellington City Council.

The event at Toi Pōneke Arts Centre and Wharewaka Function Centre will bring together academics, students, artists, writers, treaty workers, activists, politicians and change makers to discuss and create steps towards what an equitable future in a decolonised Aotearoa could look like, Council said.

“Kua rewa anō te waka – piki mai inā koia te koronga o te Ngākau kia kakea rā ngā tāpuhipuhitanga o te whakaaro! So many in our community are now the new catalysts of decolonisation simply because our community now better understands and appreciates the complexities of Māori self-determination,” said Wellington City Council’s Tatai Heke Māori, Karepa Wall.

“We have been through a process of unlearning some of our past – and now the time is to come together and relearn in order for us to move forward together.”

The ‘Imagining Decolonisation’ wānanga provides a line-up of speakers and workshop leaders including artists and musicians Ruby Solly and Ariana Tikao, Psychiatrist Dr Di Kopua, academic Emalani Case (VUW), campaigner Kassie Hartendorp (Action Station), environmentalist Catherine Delahunty (Kōtare), Councillor Tamatha Paul, Green Party MP Dr Elizabeth Kerekere, dance artist Lusi Faiva, and youth activist Safari Hynes. Experiential workshops across diverse mediums will provide an opportunity for discussion and creative expression. 

Councillor, Tamatha Paul said she was pleased to be a part of the event for a number of reasons.

“If COVID has shown us anything, it is the illumination of deep-rooted inequality in New Zealand. Amidst trying to keep our communities safe, trying to keep a roof over our heads and stay afloat, there has been little time to dream of a decolonised Aotearoa,” she said.

“I’m excited to be in wānanga with rangatira and rangatahi to collectively imagine a better, fairer society and to inspire action.”

Participants of all ages and nationalities with some knowledge of Te Tiriti are invited to attend. 

The event/wānanga can go ahead at Red under strict COVID guidelines, but numbers will be restricted and managed through the registration process, Council said.

The programme is available at and registrations open Tuesday 8 February. One-Day and 3-Day passes will be available to buy. With capacity limited, Council recommends booking early if you want to attend in person, and vaccine passports are required at both venues. 

Some livestream and recorded sessions will also be offered – visit for more information.

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