Tuesday 15th December 2020

Ngāti Tama ki Te Waipounamu Trust today presented a specially made taonga to the first ever winners of the Best Whakangahau Group category from Te Huinga Whetū Festival 2020.

The new category at the festival is an encouragement to students to rise, persevere and never give up and is being recognised with a taonga commissioned by Ngāti Tama ki Te Waipounamu Trust.

Brightwater School are the inaugural winners of the Best Non-Competitive Group category.

Chairman of Ngāti Tama ki Te Waipounamu Trust, AnthonyLittle said “we would like to congratulate the students on their achievement and hard work in preparing for the festival.

Anthonysays “The new category is to encourage new groups to consider participating in the competitive section”

The taonga was commissioned by Ngāti Tama ki Te Waipounamu Trust was created by master artist Brian Flintoff.

Brian explained that the taonga is ‘a pūmoana or pūtātara made from a triton shell, wood, and feathers to represent the children of both Tāne and Tangaroa’.
This taonga is named ‘Poutama’, to recognise the continual levels of learning, growth, and achievement in kapahaka”.

In their first ever performance at the competition, Brightwater School won the non-aggregate category of best whakangahau group

Brightwater school were unable to receive the taonga at the prizegiving on the day and Waimea College accepted the trophy on the school’s behalf.

Today, Brightwater School students, teachers, and Ngāti Kōata welcomed Ngāti Tama and Te Tauihu Cultural Council to the school for the official presentation of the taonga to students.

The next Huinga Whetū Festival is set for 2021.


Contact Information
For queries and more information contact the Ngāti Tama Communications Manager
Christina Harris Pakeho – Communications Manager
03 548 1740

More Information
There are two faces to the wood – one with a a heru carved into it symbolising Rangatira status and representing Ngāti Tama paramount chief, Te Pūoho ki Te Rangi. The other face includes a feather – depicting the Hakawai bird that is now only seen in the heavens, after famously competing with the Kārearea by flying higher and higher into the skies.