Firefighter, Leanne Allen from West Harbour station is one of 11 of our people to receive the Sir John Te Ahikaiata Turei Memorial Grant.(external link) this year.

The Grant provides focused financial support for our people undertaking te reo Māori studies at a recognised university/whare wananga or training establishment.

Born in Canada, Leanne moved to Aotearoa, New Zealand 8 years ago and has been studying te reo Māori for the last 6. Leanne’s whānau are indigenous Canadian, and she’s witnessed firsthand the almost complete devastation of her language back home.

 “I wanted to do my part to keep the language alive, the language of the people who welcomed me so warmly”.

 As a Fireighter, Leanne sees the impact of being able to kōrero in te reo Māori in her community.

 “Māori are disproportionally affected by fires in the home and we should be going to their places of learning, schools and kohanga to deliver our fire safety message in their language. It is important work, and the right thing to do”.

Leanne is studying Te Pūtaketanga, Level 4 at Te Wānanga o Aotearoa.(external link)


Fire and Emergency made a commitment to working with Māori as tangata whenua, people of the land. To support this commitment, the 'Hiwa-i-te-Rangi' programme was developed to improve the way we serve Māori. You can find out more below;

Hiwa-i-te-Rangi (Māori outcomes programme)(external link)

Our commitment to Māori as tangata whenua(external link)

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