Hana's story

We are privileged to share this beautiful kōrero from Hana Tapiata (of Te Arawa, Tainui, Horouta, Mataatua, Ironside waka). Hana shares strong values that stem from her te ao Māori upbringing and how she wishes to bestow these values and learnings onto her new pēpi.

Preparing for the arrival of her pēpi

At 37 weeks pregnant when preparing for her pēpi, Hana had a lot of internal wānanga (conversations) about the little one’s arrival . These were a mix of worry and excitement, and with so much information out there, she expresses the need to filter through the unnecessary advice and focus on what’s truly important. To Hana, this looked like tapping into the knowledge and kōrero of friends and those who share similar values.

Top tips to keep your pēpi safe:

  • Put your pēpi in their own bed and on their back.

  • If you need to move away from your baby while they are on a changing table, bed, or chair, pick them up and take them with you.

  • Choose to have hot drinks and hot food when your pēpi is not in your arms.

  • Take a good look around for items such as batteries, coins, and toys that could fit inside a toilet paper roll. These are too small for a baby so place them securely out of reach.

  • Always keep hand and eye contact with your pēpi in the bath and around water.

  • Mash, grate and finely chop foods because they are easy for a baby to eat and won’t get caught in their airways.

  • If you’re taking your pēpi in the car, always use a car restraint.

Aspirations for her pēpi

“Tino waimarie au i poipoi au i tipu ake au i roto i te reo Māori me ōna tikanga. I kuraina ki te Kohanga Reo me Te Kura Kaupapa Māori ā, ko taku tāne hoki tērā”- I am so humbled that I was raised to speak the Māori language. I was taught in Kohanga Reo and Te Kura Kaupapa Māori as well as my partner.

Hana was fortunate enough to be raised in an environment centred around mātauranga Māori, speaking te reo. She shares her perspectives and teachings with the community via her blog hanatapiata.com/blog and social media platforms.

Both Hana and her partners' childhood was centered around Kohanga Reo and Te Kura Kaupapa Māori, shaping their values and aspirations for their pēpi. They hope to create an environment “...that communicates to them they're loved and that they can do anything because they're Māori. And so, to lean into the treasure that their ancestors have left for them so that they can go out into the world and do and be whoever they wanna be”.
Confidence in creating a strong foundation for her pēpi stems from the hard work and dedication of her whānau to language revitalization and living by their values.

“Ko aku tino wawata mo te pēpi nei, a mo te whānau katoa, kia noho tau ia. Ahakoa haere ki hea, ahakoa he aha pea ana mahi”.
My dream for this baby, and the family, is to be at peace, no matter wherever they go and whatever they do.

Hana Tapiata, thank you for sharing your heart, aspirations for you pēpi and whānau, and your story to contribute to the health of tamariki and whānau across Aotearoa.