Local Govt | National News Video | Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Search


Two new waka for Ruamata Waka Ama club in Rotorua

A recent grant from NZCT to the Ruamata Waka Ama club will provide more opportunities for paddlers in the Rotorua area.

The $30,000 grant will enable two new six-man waka to be bought, increasing the capacity of the club to offer both social and competitive paddling to club members and the wider community.

“This funding is hugely important,” says Ruamata Club Chairman Heeni Hope. “The new waka will mean we can get more people on the water. Our club members were very excited about the news that our application was successful.”

Waka ama is a popular sport in the Rotorua community. There are four waka ama clubs in and around Rotorua, as well as several kura/schools which have taken to the sport. The Ruamata club hosts a series of races called Te Rotohoe, which takes paddlers to Lakes Rotoma, Te Rotoiti, Tarawera and Rotorua that is attended by paddlers from around the country. Rotorua has also hosted the National Secondary School Waka Ama Championships in 2018 and 2019 on Lake Tikitapu.

“We have about 300 paddlers on our club register, with about 100 being competitive, all-year-round paddlers,” says Heeni. “The numbers of active paddlers increase over the warmer months. We are constantly looking at new ways to cater for the members of our community who are looking to start paddling, while also accommodating our competitive paddlers' needs.”

The sport can be enjoyed by all ages. The youngest competitive paddlers at the Ruamata club are six and seven years old, but paddlers as young as five participate out of competition. The club has a strong field of paddlers that are Masters (40-49 years old) and Senior Masters (50-59 years old). There are also several competitive and social paddlers who are Golden Masters (over 60 years old).

Ruamata also has a proud winning tradition with national and world champions calling the club home. Its paddlers regularly compete at international events, such as the Moloka'i Crossing in Hawai'i, Vaka Eiva in Rarotonga and the Tahiti Aito.

“Waka ama is for some a sport, and for others a way of life,” says Heeni. “Not only is it important for oranga tinana (physical health) but also to our oranga ngākau and oranga whānau (emotional and social/family wellbeing). Whānau in our club frequently paddle together, and our waka are also used at marae and iwi events. Waka ama is important to us as it is something that keeps us connected to our past waka traditions and places.”

“It has been a very positive experience with NZCT. We are encouraged that they also see the benefits of waka ama and supported our tono (request) to fund two new waka for our club. Kāore i ārikarika ā mātou kupu whakamihi ki a NZCT.”

© Scoop Media

Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Ellen Rykers on The Dig: Community Conservation – The Solution To The Biodiversity Crisis?

There are backyard trapping networks doing their bit for Predator Free 2050, farmers planting native trees along their waterways, and iwi protecting whenua rāhui. There are 62 biodiversity sanctuaries across 56,000 hectares, with around two-thirds of them community-led. There are citizen scientists counting birds in their backyards and landowners conserving habitat in 3,500 Queen Elizabeth II National Trust covenants.

It’s increasingly clear that a government agency alone cannot combat the biodiversity crisis successfully. These grass-roots initiatives are a growing resource in the conservation toolbox. More>>

Closing This Weekend! Have Your Say On The Issues For NZ's New Biodiversity Strategy

Scoop and PEP invite you to help decide how we should protect and restore our biodiversity over the next 50 years using Scoop’s online engagement platform, HiveMind. HAVE YOUR SAY HERE>>

Biodiversity HiveMind Preliminary Progress Report
Open data report summarising preliminary findings of the Biodiversity HiveMind. Read Progress Report Here>>


PM In Japan: Jacinda Ardern’s Remarks Following Abe Summit

Today we discussed a wide range of topics. Broadly the themes were: a deeper, high-value trade and investment relationship, greater cooperation in the Pacific; and strengthening our security partnership. More>>


Replacing All But Chair: Twyford Appoints Five NZTA Board Members

Transport Minister Phil Twyford today announced the appointment of five new members to the NZ Transport Agency Board... There remain two vacancies on the NZTA Board which will be filled in due course. More>>


Climate Change: Adaptation And Risk Assessment Framework Released

“We are already experiencing the effects of a changing climate such as coastal inundation and increasingly frequent and severe droughts, floods, fires and storms. This framework is an acknowledgement that we must start adapting”, James Shaw said today. More>>


Ihumātao: Mana Whenua Reach Decision On Land

Māori King Tūheitia says mana whenua have finally reached consensus over what to do with Ihumātao - they want it back. More>>


PM To Japan, New York: Ardern To Meet Trump During UN Trip

“I’m looking forward to discussing a wide range of international and regional issues with President Trump, including our cooperation in the Pacific and the trade relationship between our countries." More>>

PM's Post-Cab: "A Way Forward"

At Monday's post-cabinet press conference, Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern announced a number of actions in response to the Labour Party's mishandling of sexual assault complaints. More>>


Gordon Campbell: On Allegations Of Left Wing Media Bias

“Left wing bias” accusations date back at least to the mid 1990s... The charge of left wing bias was ridiculous then, and is ridiculous now. More>>

Next Wave Of Reforms: Gun Registration And Licensing Changes Announced

“The Bill includes a register to track firearms and new offences and penalties that can be applied extraterritorially for illegal manufacture, trafficking, and for falsifying, removing, or altering markings – which are a new requirement under the Firearms Protocol.” More>>





InfoPages News Channels