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News / Ko Te Wiki o Te Reo Māori - It's Maori Language Week

Ko Te Wiki o Te Reo Māori - It's Maori Language Week

Ko Te Wiki o Te Reo Māori - It's Maori Language Week

Posted September 13, 2020

Māori Language week has been celebrated each year from 1975.

Māori Language Day is September 14 and commemorates the presentation of the 1972 Māori language petition to parliament.

The chosen theme for 2020 is again ‘Kia Kaha te Reo Māori’.

‘Kia Kaha’ is well understood in New Zealand English with its meaning of ‘be strong’. We often talk about languages as if they are people – talking about language health, strength and revitalisation. So when we say ‘Kia Kaha te Reo Māori’ we’re saying - ‘Let’s make the Māori language strong’.

Strength for an endangered language comes from its status, people being aware of how to support revitalisation, people acquiring and using it and from the language having the right words and terms to be used well for any purpose.

Goals of Māori Language Week

Create a positive environment for the use of Māori language.

Promote Māori language initiatives and events.

Encourage non-Māori speaking New Zealanders to use reo Māori.

Encourage speakers of Māori to support others who are just starting out.

Encourage community, business, government and media organisations to participate.

Promote resources to make Māori language more accessible.

Contribute to awareness of the Crown Māori Language Strategy and the Māori and iwi strategy that work together for revitalisation.