Ae Marika! 25 June 2012 MP Hone HarawiraPosted on June 26, 2012 by admin in Ae Marika
I was late getting to the Tai Tokerau Maori Business Awards Dinner last
Friday night. Air NZ had cancelled my flight so I grabbed a rental and drove
back from Auckland with Dick Shepherd who is finishing up at TPK at the end of the month, and we had a good chat on the way home.
I told him about how I hoped to revisit most of the Secondary Schools and
Wharekura in Tai Tokerau to talk to the senior Maori students about my role
as an MP and to hear what it was they wanted to achieve and to offer advice
to them about their future careers.
Like a kid I saw down West Auckland last week who thinks he’s a pretty good
basketball player. I told him Aniwaniwa might be going to Hawaii later this
year or next year and that if he was that good, he should consider either
trialling for the team as an outside player or transferring to Niwa. His
eyes lit up, his mum emailed me, I told the coach, and the coach has laid
down the challenge. Now it’s up to this young man. Maybe he can, maybe not.
But the opportunity is there and I think this kids gonna give it a shot. And
good luck to him.
Anyway, Dick and I swapped stories about how our own kids and mokopuna were doing and the lessons they had learnt and the lessons they might also have to share. And we talked about the problems a lot of our kids were having and the desperate times some of them were going through, particularly at Kamo High School right now.
And we talked about the things that we could do to help.
And that’s where what’s happening with our rangatahi and the Business Awards comes together, because what I saw on Friday night was a really positive picture of very ordinary people doing some very extra-ordinary things in a very depressing time.
The guest speaker was a fabulous example – a boy from Poroti who got
politely asked to leave school, started driving a truck and then went on to
buy the truck, then buy the business, then buy the Northland franchise, then
buy the North Island contracts, before becoming one of four main haulage
firms in his field for Australasia and eventually taking his business up in
Good role models are what our kids desperately need to see; to know that
what they dream of can become a reality, and that there are people out there just aching to give them a chance. Because once they can see that somebody just like them can do it then they start to believe that they can do it too – that they can achieve their own dreams.
So I’m gonna ask the Awards Dinner organisers to invite two of Maori
students from all the secondary schools and Wharekura in the north, to sit
at each of the 20 tables on the night, because I think it would be great for
our kids to see their own relations doing things that might encourage them,
or challenge them to go further. Not necessarily into business but into
anything, because life’s lessons can be drawn from anywhere.
Oh yeah – and a special congratulations to my mate Carol “Bugsy” Berghan who
took out an Award on Friday night. Bugsy has put absolutely everything into her business; so much so that she had to hitch a ride down to the Awards
with her MP’s missus! Good on you Bugs and congratulations from all of us in the far north.