The name Te Kupenga comes from Te Kupenga-a-Te Huki, a celebrated ancestor of Ngāti Kahungunu, whose greatest achievement was to create unity through networking.
Te Kupenga-a-Te Huki, or Te Huki’s Net, can be described as the precursor of modern day networking or an early version of the internet. The tools of his time were certainly different but the desired intent was the same; to connect people to each other by regular contact and communication. With diplomacy, foresight and dedication, he created a network by intermarrying himself, his sons and his daughters into many tribes covering a wide area. This became known as "the setting of the net of Te Huki" and was the ancient way of networking.
In February 2021, Hawke’s Bay’s five Councils launched the Māori cultural app Te Kupenga. Te Kupenga is the result of collaboration between the Māori specialist teams in the five Councils, and aims to improve understanding of te reo Māori and tikanga, as well as local knowledge about Treaty settlement entities and mana whenua across Te Matau-a-Māui.
It is a valuable cultural tool designed to support the community to use te reo Māori every day and to gain more understanding of tikanga Māori, as well as to provide staff with greater confidence in their engagement with mana whenua.
Te Kupenga is also supporting the Heretaunga Ararau Te Reo Māori Policy and Action Plan, which the Hastings District Council launched in 2020 to raise cultural awareness and promote the use of te reo Māori not only within Council but also throughout our wider community.
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