Financial assistance for current or future students of te reo Māori

Whaowhia te kete mātauranga - Fill your basket of knowledge.

Roy working on a carving with a tool called the toki

New year, new aspirations? If one of your goals for 2021 is to improve your knowledge of te reo Māori in order to better serve our communities, then you should know that applications are now open for the Dr Sir John Turei Memorial Grant.

Dr Sir John Te Ahikaiata Turei KNZM, CBE, Hon PhD, Hon BIC became the first national kaumātua of the New Zealand Fire Service in 2000 and had a great passion for fostering and sharing the Māori language to ensure its existence. This Grant supports his passion by offering financial support for Fire and Emergency personnel who are keen to start or progress their studies in te reo Māori.

Station Officer, Roy Williams has been one such lucky applicant who has been awarded the Grant in both 2010 and 2020. As a long-standing presenter for “Tikanga Day” for new recruits and Officers at National Training Centre, Roy says the benefits of the Grant are self-explanatory. 

“The outcome gave me more confidence in speaking te reo Māori in both my work and non-work environments. On numerous occasions, I have engaged with Māori at venues including marae, kura kaupapa, kōhanga reo, urupā, tangihanga and pōwhiri”.

Roy has regularly worked at the Waitangi celebrations and assisted in the pōwhiri to welcome Te Hiku Regional Manager, Ron Devlin. 

Roy’s 2020 application also allowed him to complete a two-year course in Whakairo (carving).

“My station entry-way has a carving of Mahuika, the Goddess of Fire. She dons a piupiu and has päua shell eyes, a magnificent tribute to our connection to “te ao Māori” and the story of fire. Perhaps a similar project awaits my chisel,” he says.

Roy has shared his experience with many of his colleagues in the hopes of encouraging them to take a similar journey.

To find out more about the Grant and how to apply please read the Grant guidance below. If you’d like to be considered for this opportunity, fill in the below application form and email it to (Project Coordinator – Maori Outcomes Programme) before 4pm on Friday 5 March.

If you have any questions, contact Rachael Perkins.

Application form(external link)

Grant guidelines(external link)

The mission of Hiwa-i-te-rangi (Māori Outcomes Programme)(external link) is to embed kaupapa Māori into our organisation and bring life to our commitment to Māori as tangata whenua. You can read more about this here.

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