Kāhui Kaitiaki Hui, October 2013

By Bridget Reweti, Intern, National Services Te Paerangi

Komiti of two. I’m not sure if two people even count as a committee, but it sounds official, like we’re up to stuff, which we were. But credit is due where credit is due, and Kāhui Kaitiaki started long before Tryphena Cracknell and myself became the somewhat self-appointed committee. Like similar hui of the past, our recent one at Kohupātiki Marae was a meeting point for Māori working within the museum, gallery and heritage sector. There were haati new faces and haati more experienced faces.

Kāhui Kaitiaku Hui. Image courtesy of Bridget Reweti, Te Papa.
Kāhui Kaitiaku Hui. Image courtesy of Bridget Reweti, Te Papa.

We were fed well, both literally and metaphorically, with great speakers and great food. We got to check out the fancy new MTG Hawke’s Bay, we had an international skype session, a taonga pūoro workshop and even chilled out in some hot pools. By the end my head was swimming with ideas and information and so far I’ve managed to pin down three things that resonated the most.

1. People (not all but a lot) seem to stumble, quite fortunately, into their museum careers. How then do we encourage rangatahi into the sector when there are so many variations on how to get there?

2. How can Kāhui Kaitiaki benefit its members, not just at a hui, but during the in-between times.

3. The possibility of an International Kaitiaki network of indigenous working and associated with museums. Perhaps this already exists. If so, sign me up!

Kāhui Kaitiaku Hui. Image courtesy of Bridget Reweti, Te Papa.
Kāhui Kaitiaku Hui. Image courtesy of Bridget Reweti, Te Papa.

I possibly have more questions than answers but they’re good questions. The significance of staying at a marae with other Māori who work in the sector was not lost on anyone. It is good to get together with similar minds. There is a level of understanding among kaitiaki, and having the time and space to share amongst one another is extremely valuable. It was real nice.

Tītiro Whakamua a Kāhui Kaitiaki Hui was held 11-13 October at Kohupātiki Marae in Clive and proudly supported by Te Puni Kōkiri, National Services Te Paerangi and Museums Aotearoa. He mihi mahana tēnei ki te whānau o Kohupātiki Marae.