Tahunakura Charitable Trust

Tahunakura Charitable Trust was established in March 2019 by Jude Campbell, Moana-Aroha Henry, Tāmati Rākena and Joseph Ramanui all of whom are from Te Tai Tokerau. At that time, all trustees were studying at a postgraduate level and found Te Tai Tokerau was under-resourced in the provision of academic and financial support; safe, adequate study spaces and reo Māori focussed writing workshops. Tahunakura was established to address this inequity; to tautoko and nurture tertiary students currently studying and to promote and develop the understanding and use of te reo Māori.

In October 2019, Tahunakura held its inaugural Tertiary Study Wānanga at NorthTec Campus in Whangārei attended by a majority of postgraduate students studying at a Master’s or PhD level. Participant feedback reinforced the need for more educational wānanga like this and the value it could provide to all tertiary students. Seeking financial support to offer these opportunities equated to many proposal submissions, countless hui and evidencing successful outcomes to meet varying funding application requirements that did not cater to a new kaupapa such as these study wānanga.

Out of this struggle, Tahunakura Charitable Trust established the TAIAO clothing range in Sep 2020. The purpose of TAIAO is to create educational scholarships for students who whakapapa to Te Tai Tokerau and promote and normalize the use of te reo Māori. Through the power of social media sites like Facebook and InstagramTAIAO has received a phenomenal amount of support and reached various demographic groups throughout Aotearoa giving communities an opportunity to shape, participate and advance the educational and reo aspirations of the Trust.

The proceeds from TAIAO were used to host two Tertiary Study Wānanga in March & June 2021 with additional government funding. These wānanga were held in Kaikohe and attracted more than 100 participants from various tertiary providers across Aotearoa with whakapapa links to Te Tai Tokerau.

In March 2021, Tahunakura Charitable Trust was the recipient of the Best Emerging and Newly Established Enterprise Award at the Te Tai Tokerau Māori Business Awards. This achievement helped to further promote the aspirations of the Trust into a phase of rapid growth and garnered tautoko from social media experts, philanthropists and other government organisations.

Tahunakura Charitable Trust currently has one full-time volunteer. This role is dedicated to growing the aspirations of Tahunakura and TAIAO by securing long-term sustainable funding that will increase the number of Māori academic scholars, create more educational scholarships, enhance and grow employment opportunities and continue to promote te reo Māori in Te Tai Tokerau.