Cook Islands language in the spotlight

posted: 2:30 pm - 28th July 2017
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Te akakite nei te Minita o te tangata Pacifica, a Alfred Ngaro, ka akatuera ia nei te epetoma o te reo Maori Kuki Airani a teia Sapati e tu mai nei e na te reira e turama i te Kuki Airani e ngai akatoroia e te au tangata orote.

One of New Zealand’s favourite holiday destinations is in the spotlight with Cook Islands Language week celebrations kicking off this Saturday says Minister for Pacific Peoples, Alfred Ngaro.

“The Cook Islands is more than just a beautiful place to visit, it’s the home of amazing cultures and languages,” says Mr Ngaro.

“Te ‘Epetoma o te Reo Māori Kūki ’Āirani give all kiwis the chance to celebrate those special elements.

“In New Zealand around 62,000 people identify themselves as Cook Islanders; however statistics show less than 13% of New Zealand-born Cook Islanders speak Te Reo Māori Kūki 'Āirani.

“It’s a language that needs all of us to do our part in keeping it alive, even if it’s just learning a few phrases or one of our beautiful songs.

“As a proud Cook Islander I know just how special Te Reo Māori Kūki 'Āirani is and I’m looking forward to doing my part to to encourage people to give it a go.”

Te ‘Epetoma o te Reo Māori Kūki ’Āirani runs from Sunday 30 July through to Saturday 5 August 2017.

The theme for the week this year is “Ei rāvenga nāku i te tuatua i tōku reo Māori Kūki 'Āirani ka anoano au i te turuturu ā tōku ngutu`are tangata `ē te matakeinanga”. In English, “An encouraging home and community environment is what I need to build my love and my confidence to speak my reo Māori Kūki ’Āirani”.

The official opening ceremony of Te ‘Epetoma o te Reo Māori Kūki ’Āirani will be held at the Auckland War Memorial Museum on Saturday 29 July 2017 from 5.30pm to 7.30pm.

“We are honoured to be hosting the second of seven national Pacific language week launches at Auckland Museum, with the Cook Islands this weekend. To celebrate Cook Islands Language Week, Auckland Museum is displaying a case of taonga (treasures) showcasing traditional tautai (fishing) objects, and offering behind the scenes tours of our community-led Pacific Collection Access Project. We will also be celebrating the sounds, language, stories, colour and beauty of Cook Islands culture offsite at Te Oro in Glen Innes, and hope the public get along to that,” says Auckland Museum Director Dr. David Gaimster.

Further information about Te ‘Epetoma o te Reo Māori Kūki ’Āirani including a calendar of events and language resources can be found at www.mpp.govt.nz and at the Cook Islands Language Week and the Ministry for Pacific People’s facebook pages.