He aha te mea nui o te ao? He tangata, he tangata, he tangata.
Ko Panguru te Maunga
Ko Whakarapa te Awa
Ko Waipuna te Marae
Ko Ngatokimatawhaorua te Waka
Ko Ngāti manawa te Hapū
Ko Te Rarawa ki Hokianga te Iwi
Ko Latoya Graham tōku ingoa
He uri ahau nō te Hokianga nui a Kupe
My name is Latoya Graham. I have been performing kapahaka for almost 20 years and have been teaching kapahaka in the South Island for nine years.
I am a kapahaka song writer and many of my songs have been sung throughout New Zealand and most recently, at Te Matatani.
I currently work for the Kapa Hikitia Trust, which consists of multiple expert tutors that teach in approximately 50 schools in Canterbury. I also work at Ko Tane, performing items such as: Haka Pōwhiri, Poi, Tīrākau, Mōteatea, Mau rākau, Haka and Waiata-a-ringa for tourists wanting an authentic Māori experience.
I am passionate about kapahaka and have a great amount of experience. Over the past nine years, I have taught kapahaka, poi and harakeke wānanga in the schools of Hakatere.
My goal is for our rangatahi to engage more with their culture and keep it strong so it can be passed onto the next generation.
Ngā mihi aroha, Latoya.
Māori Success Achievement Awards
At the recent evening to celebrate the success of Māori students in our schools’ cluster, these students received awards:
Te Marino Roberts (11DN)
Te Marino won the Te Reo Rangatira Award for Highest Achieving Student in Te Reo Māori. She is currently sitting Level 3 Te Reo and last year received a merit award for Level 2 Te Reo. Te Marino is an excellent softball player representing Canterbury in the Under 15 A team, competing in the South Island tournament team and also plays in the New Zealand under 15 Development Sox. Te Marino also plays netball and won the Wednesday Netball Most Valuable Player Award.
Melanie Aitken (12IT)
Melanie is very involved in the school and is co-chairperson of the Anti-bullying Committee. Melanie is in the Kapahaka group and been awarded her badge for her service to Kapahaka. She also won the Māori High Achiever Award and Academic Excellence Badge Level 1 with Gold honours Bar. Melanie is also a netball coach and player and won the Emma Cantwell Trophy for Most Improved Player.
Fifita Tahaafe (13HW)
Fifita is very involved in the school and this year has been a Culture Prefect as well as stepping up and taking on the role of acting head girl. In sport Fifita has shown her leadership and is leader of the RHS Senior A netball team. Fifta is also a drummer for Polyfest and puts a lot of energy into encouraging everyone involved. When she has met resistance with the Polyfest group she ‘stuck it out’ and kept people focused. Fifita is also leader of the young woman’s group at her church.
Alana Hillary (13SN)
Alana is the Class Leader Manager and Arts leader. During the very successful recent school production of ‘Lion King’, Alana took on the role of Stage Manager and proved a valuable asset to the team. She is also the manager and editor of b team (promotional videos). Alana is a Film Club mentor, 48 hours team leader/producer/editor and theatre sports coordinator. Earlier this year, Alana won a Māori scholarship to attend “Hands-On” at Otago University. Alana also won the Māori High Achiever Award this year.
Jade Jenkins (13BU)
Jade is very involved with volleyball and is the New Zealand U19 Volleyball Captain as well as refereeing and coaching volleyball. She has been selected in the NZ U19 Volleyball Team competing in the Australian State Champs on the Gold Coast this month and has been chosen to Captain that team. Jade has also won numerous awards for volleyball at school including sports recognition award, sports distinction award and most recently Girls Most Valuable Player. Jade is a peer support leader and has also maintained a high level of Academic achievements, gaining Merit Endorsement for NCEA level 2.
Cassidy Taua (11WS)
Throughout his time at RHS, Cassidy has displayed strong leadership and interpersonal skills, especially in the junior council. He plays representative rugby league for the Canterbury U15 side and captains the U14 team. He also plays basketball, touch, rugby, indoor soccer and ki o rahi. He is Level 1 touch referee and has gained his leadership badge for Kokiri. Cassidy is very involved with Te Reo at the school and mentors a staff member learning Te Reo. He is active in kapahaka, leading our school ropu as the kaitataki and performing also in the Ko Tane experience.
Shannon Taua (13MY)
Shannon has been awarded a Māori Leadership Award, Service and Leadership Award, Award for service to working with Kohanga Ako (Special Needs). As a kapahaka leader, she has received a five year service award to kapahaka. Shannon also performs kapahaka at the Ko Tane experience and tutors at the Ngā Kete Homework Club for Riccarton Primary students. She has a New Zealand Certificate for refereeing. Shannon won the Emily Cumming Trophy for most valuable player in her netball team. Shannon has received a number of school sports awards including Sports Distinction Award.
Brin Williams (13MY)
Brin is a kapahaka leader and peer support leader of International students. She has an active role in the Ngā Kete homework club. Brin is very involved with netball coaching, both playing and refereeing.
Thomas Chin (12MY)
Thomas is very involved as a leader throughout the school, he is on the school Culture Committee and Anti-Bullying Committee. He is a Senior Kapahaka Leader and Ngā Kete Homework Tutor for Riccarton Primary. Thomas has received a Māori High Achiever Award and Certificate of Academic Achievement for Level 1. Thomas is very involved in sport and is on the Halberg Disability Sports Foundation Youth Council. He has received a number of awards for Boccia including the New Zealand Boccia Player of the Year in 2016.