Communities across the country are preparing to come together to celebrate the indigenous language of Aotearoa New Zealand for Māori Language Week | Te Wiki o te Reo Māori.
“Te Wiki o te Reo Māori is an opportunity to recognise a unique part of our national identity and to celebrate the collective journey we are taking towards its revitalisation,” said Minister of Māori Development, Willie Jackson.
“Whether we are in Paris, Kaipara, Sydney or Christchurch, te reo unites New Zealanders. Go to www.reomaori.co.nz website to find out what others are doing and how you too can get involved.”
Born out of protest, the week is now about promoting te reo to everyone, he said.
“This year will also mark the third Māori Language Moment | Te Wā Tuku Reo Māori, a challenge to stop and celebrate te reo for a moment. Devised by Te Taura Whiri i te Reo Māori, the aim is to get more than one million people taking part: because one million speakers are needed by 2040 to safeguard the language.”
“New Zealand’s response to the annual Māori Language Moment has been massive. Young and old, Māori, Pākehā, Indian, Samoan, Chinese. Tiny country schools to high rise buildings in our biggest cities. Retirement homes, hospitals, kindergartens, supermarkets, building sites,” said Minister Jackson.
“More than one million took part in the first moment and in doing so: they set a world record, it was the biggest Māori language event in the history of our nation. This year will be another opportunity to unite for a moment, this Thursday 14th September.
“I want to encourage everyone to get involved and have a go in the festivities this week and support our beautiful culture and language so it can be cherished for generations,” Minister Jackson said.
Kia kaha te reo Māori!