Ten years of language funding in Te Upoko-o-Te-Ika

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The release today of regional statistics that have been accumulated over a 10 year period shows Mā Te Reo is having a significant impact on community driven language revitalisation efforts in Te Upoko-o-Te-Ika.

The Mā Te Reo fund was established in 2001 to provide financial support to projects that contribute to community based Māori language revitalisation.  This initiative places responsibility on iwi, hapū, whānau, Māori communities and Māori organisations to create and develop innovative solutions to what is a national crisis and these factsheets show Māori have responded to that challenge.

The fact sheets tell the story of the impact of that investment on language revitalisation, says Chief Executive, Glenis Philip Barbara.

The Mā Te Reo fund supported 79 projects in Te Upoko-o-Te-Ika. The key findings for the region included:

  • 153 Māori language revitalisation projects received Mā Te Reo funding over a ten year period from 2001 2010;
  • Over $2 million was provided by the Mā Te Reo fund for community driven te reo Māori revitalisation initiatives from 2001 2010;
  • Wānanga reo represented 44% of the regions Mā Te Reo investment;
  • 85% of all funded projects actively promoted te reo Māori within their projects, which impacted on the normalisation of te reo Māori;
  • 20% of all funded projects report the strengthening of Māori (or iwi-specific) identity as a result of te reo Māori initiatives; and
  • 50% of all funded projects indicated a continued commitment to learning and using te reo Māori beyond their project.

Perhaps the most powerful insight gleaned from the information contained across all regional factsheets is that the funding made available by Mā Te Reo has enabled initiatives and projects that are driven by Māori.  The ability to be able to not just diagnose language concerns but also resolve them at a local level is a clearly articulated ambition and evidently one that Mā Te Reo meets

The net result of this activity language gain and cultural strength which are the cornerstones for successful Māori development, says Glenis Philip-Barbara.

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