E ngā rau, e ngā rahi, nga hau e whā, tēnei te mihi mahanui ki a koutou katoa.  Nau mai haere mai ki Ōtautahi.

Day One of the conference on Tuesday 5th November will be held at Onuku Marae which is set in the scenic Akaroa Harbour.

Ōnuku Marae offers a stunning carved Whare Tīpuna (ancestral house), a new and contemporary wharekai (dining room), a beautiful original church and lush peaceful grounds. Delegates will come as guests and leave as whanau (family).

Onuku Marae is the location of the University of Otago, Christchurch immersed learning programme.


The Pōwhiri is a traditional Māori Welcome Ceremony, which takes place when going onto a Marae. The purpose of the Pōwhiri is to remove the tapu of the Manuhiri (visitors) – to make them one with the Tāngata Whenua (People of the Land). It is a gradual process of the Manuhiri and the Tāngata Whenua coming together. The University of Otago, Dunedin and Wellington groups will lead the process of bringing on the LIME delegation.

Koha is a custom of reciprocity performed during the Pōwhiri. A Koha is a gift given by the Manuhiri to the Tangata Whenua. Traditionally this was food and delicacies or Taonga (treasures), today this custom is still very much alive and the koha offered is mostly cash. The koha goes towards the running of the Marae, including supporting Mana Whenua who volunteer their time to ensure protocol is upheld .The koha will be collected by a University of Otago staff member prior to the Pōwhiri. We suggest a minimum koha of $10.00 per person.

Protocol for going onto the Marae involves wahine (women) at the front and tane (men) at the back.  The delegation will go onto the Marae when the Kaikaranga (Women Caller) calls out to the delegation.  We will have a Kaikaranga arranged to respond. Once we have entered the Marae (this may be outside), The University of Otago, Dunedin Kaumatua will speak on behalf of the delegation, following on from his korero (talk) the delegation will be required to sing a waiata (song).  Please click on the link to the waiata that has been chosen.  You will also get an opportunity to practice the waiata on the bus ride over to Onuku Marae.

Following on from the waiata, a LIME representative will also speak and a second waiata from Australia will be sung. This is also available in the link below and on the smartphone App, and we will practice on the bus.

The song is a Yorta Yorta song called Inanay Gupu Wana.


At the conclusion of the korero (oratory) exchange there will be a Hariru (shaking of hands and hongi – the sharing of breath by pressing nose and forehead).  If you are unsure don’t worry the home side will give you some advice, and if all else fails what the person in front of you.  You can also watch this brief you tube clip.

Once the the sharing of kai (food) signifies the end of the formal Pōwhiri and we will begin the days program.


What do I wear to a Marae?

We suggest tidy smart casual (long pants and shirts for men and below knew skirts or dresses for women).  In November the weather can still be unsettled so we suggest that you take some layers in case it gets cold.

Once the Pōwhiri is finished can I go everywhere on the Marae?

Yes you can, however there are some protocols to be aware of.  Firstly there is no food or drinks (including water) to be consumed inside the Wharenui (this is the carved meeting house) or directly out the front.  You are also required to remove your shoes if you are entering the Wharenui.

There is an urupa (burial ground) across the road from Onuku Marae.  It is clearly signposted but we do ask that you do not enter this area.

Can I take photos?

Yes you can take photos EXCEPT inside the Wharenui (carved meeting house).