New Māori resource for Olympic Games launched: Cheer on our Olympians in te reo Māori!

Te reo Māori is going all the way to Paris as the first-ever bilingual sporting resource for an Olympic Games is  launched today.  

‘Te Reo Māori ki Parī 2024’ is the first Olympic Games glossary in Māori and English. It features more than 1,000  terms and phrases, across 30 Olympic Games sporting codes. It was created in a three-way collaboration between Te Whare o Pou Tangata (the New Zealand Olympic Committee), New Zealand's exclusive Olympic Games broadcaster Rangiata (Sky), and Te Taura Whiri i te Reo Māori (the Māori Language Commission).  

“There is great demand for te reo support and resources across the motu. The pool of sports-related words is even more limited. Paris 2024 presents a significant opportunity for all three organisations to take te reo Māori to the world and to gift it to all New Zealanders, now and in future,” says NZOC Pouwhiringa (Māori Culture Lead) - Oriini Kaipara.  

“The NZOC is passionate about Māori culture, it is integral to all our mahi, and it is key to our performance success at Olympic Games.  

“This isn’t just about including more Māori during the Games, this is how NZOC does things now. We are thrilled to support te reo Māori and those championing it like some of our extraordinary athletes representing us in Paris.” 

The resource includes breaking, the newest event to the Olympic Games, plus new Māori words for athletics,  triathlon, sailing and more. These terms are designed for beginner to advanced levels of te reo speakers and  learners, from fans to support teams and athletes to broadcasters. 

For Rangiata Sky, the resource started as a way to boost levels of Māori language in broadcasting. The broadcaster is taking a deliberate stance on increased use of te reo as part of its long-term commitment to Aotearoa audiences.  

“Recently we’ve been using more Māori in our live sports broadcasts, including for Māori All Blacks matches and the 2023 Rugby World Cup. It’s been well received by audiences as well as our own Sky crew”, says Sophie Moloney, Chief Executive of Rangiata, Sky. 

“Paris 2024 is another great opportunity to elevate the use of te reo in our Games commentary. We were pleased to work with Te Whare o Pou Tangata and Te Taura Whiri to make sure broadcasters have a range of kupu and kīwaha to celebrate and encourage our athletes and teams.” 

Showcasing te reo Māori on such a global platform reinforces the value New Zealanders have for te reo Māori and models the language as a normal means of communication says Ngahiwi Apanui-Barr, Chief Executive of Te Taura Whiri i te Reo Māori.  

“As New Zealanders, when we’re away from home, te reo Māori is a touchstone to connect us straight back. So in a moment of pride, like walking into that arena to represent your country, it’s powerful that te reo Māori will be there too, backing our best.”  

“Welcoming te reo into places you wouldn’t expect to find it, like the Olympics, is an important part of normalising te reo Māori. It shows that te reo Māori is a normal, living and forever language”. 

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