Maori, Pasifika culture to fore in Polyfest

Rimu School pupil Tupufia Lafoga (7) leads his school haka at the Murihiku Polyfest in...
Rimu School pupil Tupufia Lafoga (7) leads his school haka at the Murihiku Polyfest in Invercargill yesterday. Photo: Sharon Reece
More than 6000 Southland and Otago pupils embraced Maori and Pasifika culture in Invercargill this week for the Murihiku Maori and Pasifika Cultural Trust's Polyfest.

National Party list MP and spokesman for Maori development Nuk Korako, who visited Polyfest yesterday, said the event was a way of introducing children to their own cultures.

"Particularly with our young ones, a lot of them who actually come from other iwi, a lot of them that come from the Islands that perhaps have not lived their culture.

"It's from here, I think, that you actually have the beginning of a seed that's actually being planted that they want to know more about their culture."

The event was also a way of educating Pakeha children about other cultures in New Zealand, he said.

"That's what it's about in 21st century New Zealand, that we are all bicultural, tri-cultural, but it's not just about Polynesians; it's actually also about our other treaty partner as well."

Participating schools went all out for their performances, Murihiku Maori and Pasifika Trust board chair Terangi Junior Tonga said yesterday.

"It's more than just a week. It's not just a performance, it's also the learning that goes behind it. It's fantastic - we're loving it."

The last of the school performances are being held today.

 

 

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