Ko Te Reo Māori Kia Rere

Sept. 30, 2022, 10:56 p.m.

Once a week, people meet at a cafe in Kerikeri to speak reo Māori in a relaxed environment where the just one rule is Kaua e kōrero Pākehā huri noa ki tēni tēpu.

Three months ago, Reuben Heger wanted a place for anyone to practise speaking Māori in a relaxed, informal setting.

Every Friday, the group meets at Pipsqueak cafe in Kerikeri where everyone is welcome regardless of their level of comprehension or abilities.

Heger says, "the importance of this kaupapa is to see the reo blossom and to break down barriers of ignorance and cultural ignorance.

Cafe owner Vanessa Small loves watching the reactions of fellow patrons when they hear a whole table speaking Reo Māori. Small says, "they are in awe".

The mix of people at the table is usually a 50-50 mix of Pākeha and Māori to normalise Te Reo Māori in an environment where you might not usually hear it spoken.

Chair of Te Pae Motuhake o Te Tai Tokerau Aprehama Kerepeti Edwards commends the people involved and is very supportive of the kaupapa.

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