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Inclusive Aotearoa Collective Tāhono Use Wayfinding To Plot A Course For 2022

Press Release – IACT

On Friday 26 November and Saturday 27 November, Inclusive Aotearoa Collective Tāhono (IACT) hosted the ‘Tāhono: He Wānanga Tuhonohono – Wayfinding for Belonging’ virtual event. The event brought together a range of individuals and organisations from across the motu who are currently working to create an inclusive society.

The IACT project aims to use a cross-sector, collaborative approach to create a socially inclusive Aotearoa New Zealand – a nation founded on the partnership of Te Tiriti o Waitangi, that provides a place for all. The goal is to achieve a more coordinated approach across communities and groups who are currently working in this space.

The purpose of the two-day Wayfinding for Belonging virtual event was to connect participants in new cross-sector working groups, collect ideas and start producing action plans for what promises to be a busy 2022 for all involved.

Even though the event was held online (previously scheduled for in-person in Wellington), there was plenty of drive and energy among the participants to contribute ideas and form new relationships.

“We know that the best way to counter division and discord is to bring communities together to work on issues that are of interest to us all”, says Co-Lead Anjum Rahman. “Whether this is by improving the way our stories are told or how we bring Te Tiriti into our systems, positive change requires commitment and coordination of our efforts.”

The Wayfinding for Belonging event was facilitated by Faumuina Felolini Tafunai, founder of Flying Geese Productions, who used her bespoke wayfinding model to guide IACT through the process of creating these collaborative groups.

Wayfinding is an extremely powerful approach to creating innovative solutions in an uncertain, complex and constantly changing world. It rests on the problem-solving skills needed to successfully navigate from

place to place, taking into account all the different elements of the journey e.g. values, barriers to success, the people involved, the resources needed and the environment in which the change needs to occur.

Shay Singh, Chair of Indian Origin Pride New Zealand was one of the participants in attendance:

‘’It‘s time to ask the hard questions of ourselves and those around us in public and corporate settings as to why diversity programs in New Zealand are failing the underrepresented groups”, says Mr Singh.

“Participating in the Wayfinding for Belonging workshop was a great opportunity to come together with people who are pushing hard to make a change for their communities through shared learning of cultures, values and tools. I hope this will continue to develop so we can move beyond the current tokenistic and commercialised tick box approach that only reinforces the status quo.’’

Looking ahead to 2022, IACT will continue to collaborate and ensure all voices are heard.

“Courageous and healthy conversations will be encouraged as we imagine and create an Aotearoa New Zealand where we have a strong sense of belonging and retain our own magic and uniqueness to add richness to our place,” explains IACT Co-Lead Keriana Tawhiwirangi.

He aha te kai a te rangatira? He kōrero, he kōrero, he kōrero.

What is the food of the leader? It is knowledge. It is communication.

Aroha atu, aroha mai

Tātou i a tātou katoa

Hui e! Taiki e!

Let us show respect for each other

For one another

Bind us all together!

Additional Information

Inclusive Aotearoa Collective Tāhono

Inclusive Aotearoa Collective Tāhono (IACT) was formed in April 2019, not long after the March 15 terror attack in Christchurch, with Anjum Rahman appointed as Project Lead. In 2020, conversations were held at 46 locations across 17 regions with 860 people, providing an opportunity for people to share their experiences of belonging and not belonging. This research is available to read on the IACT website.

At the beginning of 2021, a group of facilitators joined the IACT team to facilitate regional hui and deepen the dialogues that were revealed through the 2020 research. These regional hui have been essential in helping IACT join up conversations within and across regions, and encouraging people and organisations to define the issues that are important to their communities.

Also in 2021, IACT continued to develop their relationship with Pou Tikanga, National Iwi Chairs Forum (NCIF) and worked together as a team to embed that partnership and Te Tiriti in their ways of working. They also became a co-led Collective, with Anjum Rahman and Keriana Tawhiwhirangi sharing the lead.

Flying Geese Productions:

Founded by Faumuina Felolini Maria Tafunai, Flying Geese Productions uses wayfinding to create bespoke strategies for organisational and business resilience. It also uses its profits to support youth resilience programmes in schools. With a focus on Maori and Pasifika communities, Flying Geese Productions aims to create a more equitable social and economic ecosystem.

Wayfinding comes from a genealogy of knowledge passed down through Pacific star navigators and voyagers. Based on many guiding conversations with navigator Hoturoa Barclay-Kerr and by voyaging aboard Haunui waka, Faumuina has created an incredibly dynamic wayfinding model to help groups like IACT navigate uncharted waters and plan for the journey ahead.

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