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Make Some Noise Campaign.

SUPPORT WHĀNAU MĀORI: Make Some Noise Campaign.

Press Release: AWA: Allies of Whānau o Aotearoa

Allies of Whānau o Aotearoa (AWA), is a new Māori group, formed out of a hui of Māori social service workers and community activists to advocate support for all whānau o Aotearoa. AWA is promoting whānau based solutions to whānau problems.

"We want whānau, and our allies, to MAKE SOME NOISE tomorrow to show that they support solutions to the challenges faced by whānau Māori that are conceived, developed and delivered by Māori for Māori," says spokesperson Te Kanikani Tautoko.

The group met on Saturday August 4th, 2007 and developed a list of requirements that whānau need from their allies:

- be willing to listen to whānau
- acknowledge that the solutions rest in Māori hands
- be respectful toward Māori
- speak when invited
- be accountable to Māori
- be willing to share power

Example: allies would advocate support and funding to whānau, to address the breakdown of Māori society that has occured with the loss of our lands, language and culture, and economic well being.

"We have had many non-Māori broadcasting what they think is wrong with Māori people and whānau in the last week. While we appreciate their concern, non-Māori need to recognise the following fundamentals: This is not a 'Māori problem', so much as it is a colonisation problem and Māori communities must lead the development of solutions." Said Te Kanikani Tautoko

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Te Kanikani Tautoko continued, "the silence proposed by a coalition of non-Māori organisations is counter-productive; engaging in korero and making noise is a more appropriate approach. Our aim with MAKE SOME NOISE is to gather solidarity from genuine supporters of whānau."

"Another central purpose of MAKE SOME NOISE is to mihi (acknowledge/honour) the grief and mamae (pain) that the whanau of baby Nia, and other whanau who have lost children to violence are going through at this time. For this reason we ask supporters of MAKE SOME NOISE to kōrero on this issue, sing waiata tautoko (songs of support) and/or play taonga puoro (Maori instruments) in support of the whanau. At 12.12pm, Wednesday August 8th 2007."

"We worry that the solutions promoted by many non-Māori pundits in news media this past week will make things worse. For example, the marriage counseling proposed by the Sensible Sentencing Trust, Family First and For the Sake of Our Children Trust is useless as it does not deal with the root causes of violence. We need a new system that shares resources fairly."

People who MAKE SOME NOISE this Wednesday will be sending a message that they support whānau; they believe that whānau hold the solutions and will be advocating working genuinely with Māori to support whānau. AWA urges all people of Aotearoa who support a fair and equitable approach to solving violence in Māori communities to MAKE SOME NOISE with us at 12:12pm, Wednesday August 8th, 2007.

ends

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