Māori Language Week parades and similar events next month will bring thousands of New Zealanders out to celebrate the nation’s indigenous language under the theme of ‘Kia kaha te reo Māori!”
After successful parades in the past two years in Wellington this year six parades or related events are planned – in Gisborne, Manukau, Auckland CBD, North Shore, Wellington and Rotorua.
September is not only the month of Māori Language Week, but also key events and initiatives.
September 14 is Māori Language Day which commemorates the presentation of the 1972 petition on the Māori language to parliament. Also hundreds of people celebrate September as Mahuru Māori, in which they dedicate themselves to speaking only (or a little bit of) Māori during the month.
The Chief Executive of the Māori Language Commission Ngahiwi Apanui says parades are a way for everyone to celebrate te reo Māori.
“Revitalisation is about more than people learning Māori. It’s also about welcoming te reo Māori into public spaces.
“Te reo Māori needs to live not only on the marae, on Māori TV and radio and in schools. We need to see and hear it where it belongs – everywhere!
“Every New Zealander can help strengthen the Māori language. Come and join a parade or watch and support te reo Māori!”
”Kia kaha rā tātou!”