Moving farewell to a great pioneer
E Tamariki Oro Piako
A leader, visionary, true Cook Islander
Artists recall outspoken advocate
Remembering an advocate of culture
Tributes to Te Tika Mataiapo Dorice Reid
Passionate for environment
Students need help to make history
Spreading peace in the Pacific
Tributes flow for Te Tika Mataiapo
Moving farewell to a great pioneer
The Cook Islands farewelled one of its most notable leaders at a moving state funeral yesterday morning.
Those who knew Sir Apenera Short turned up in droves to say aera ra to the last surviving member of the countrys first-ever Cabinet.
It was a day of great national sadness, said acting prime minister Tom Marsters in a poignant tribute speech.
But while it was a time to grieve, it was also a time to celebrate the gift from God that was the amazing life of Sir Apenera Short.
We gather here as one at this state funeral to acknowledge and farewell one of the finest sons of the Cook Islands, Marsters said.
Marsters described Sir Apenera as a fine man of remarkable national importance who spent most of his adult life serving the Cook Islands and its people.
He was no ordinary man he was a great politician and served his community with integrity, vision and dedication.
Sir Apenera was 49 when he entered the Cook Islands Legislative Assembly as a member of parliament for his district, Takitumu. The year was 1965, and it was a time of great change for our country, Marsters said.
Sir Apenera was chosen by Papa Arapati (Sir Albert Henry) to represent his people in the countrys first Cabinet a government body that would change the way Cook Islanders lived and perceived themselves, Marsters said.
That Cabinet made monumental changes to the way Cook Islanders lived, and saw the world, and themselves as decision-makers of their own destiny, Marsters said.
Sir Apenera, who was also a traditional leader and held the Takau Rangatira title, went on to enjoy a long political career.
Over the years, Sir Apenera held a number of portfolios, including police, agriculture, cooperatives, economic development, electricity, energy and broadcasting.
His eldest son Tupe says he was proudest of his work in the cooperatives, which enabled Cook Islands people to work for themselves, lease land and take out loans for homes, vehicles and farming equipment.
As a minister in government, many of Papa Apeneras dreams for our national improvement were realised. Groundbreaking initiatives became reality in successful national projects that gave Cook Islands men, women and youth paying jobs, put power and water in homes, kids in schools and meals on tables. We as a people and nation are still enjoying the fruits of the many trees that Papa Apenera planted, Marsters said yesterday.
Sir Apenera was appointed the highest office in the Cook Islands the Queens Representative in 1990. He was knighted in 1995, and served three terms as QR with honour and integrity, Marsters said.
But throughout his political career, Sir Apenera remained a humble man.
He never lost that common touch and he could speak easily with anyone and everyone, Marsters said.
Marsters laid the first wreath at Sir Apeneras funeral. His was followed by a succession of wreaths, laid by deputy leader of the opposition Wilkie Rasmussen, speaker of the house Sir Geoffrey Henry, president of the Are Ariki Travel Tou Ariki, New Zealand High Commissioner Linda Te Puni, Cook Islands Police, the Public Service Commissioners office, solicitor-general Tingika Elikana, the Ministry of Education, acting financial secretary Priscilla Maruariki, the Bahai church and government house.
Marsters asked the National Auditorium to pause, reflect and uphold Sir Apenera as an outstanding leader at the national, village, church and family levels.
But the cruel reality of our mortal lives is that in the end of it all, mans life is just a vapour, as the Bible says, to pass and be blown away. Now the packing shed buildings are gone. The plantations are overgrown. The machineries have rusted away. But although all that has gone, something of great value, as intangible as it is, has remained. That is the fine reputation and legacy of a man we had the privilege to know as Papa Apenera, Marsters said.
He concluded: He was truly an amazing man. He was a pioneer of huge energy. He was a hard worker and brought people along with him as a leader and visionary. He was a natural motivator. He had an overcoming spirit. We as a nation will remain forever grateful for the remarkable life of state service of one Sir Apenera Short, KBE.
- Rachel ReevesRachel Reeves
Sir Apenera and Lady Maui Short in a 2003 photo.
Sir Apenera Short and Lady Maui Short with Prince Edward at the opening of Maire Nui Drive in October, 1992. Apenera3
Sir Apenera Short with Prince Edward at the opening of Maire Nui Drive in October, 1992. Apenera4, Apenera5
Sir Apenera Short, Lady Maui Short and Tiana Meyer at the 2003 nuku gospel parade. nuku-3
Sir Apenera Short and Lady Maui Short at the Niue Appeal at the Staircase Restaurant.
Short family members paying their respects to the late Sir Apenera yesterday.
Uniformed police officers carry the casket from the National Auditorium at the state funeral.
The National Auditorium was packed for Sir Apenera Short’s state funeral.
Sonny Daniel (right) and Jerome Shedden singing at yesterday’s state funeral for Sir Apenera Short.
Mata Hetland (nee Short) carries a portrait of her parents at yesterday’s funeral procession.
E Tamariki Oro Piako
Below are the lyrics to E Tamariki Oro Piako, a song composed by Sonny Daniel for the 2008 Mire Atu and sung by Daniel, Jerome Shedden and Curly George at Sir Apenera Shorts funeral yesterday. E Tamariki Oro Piako is an old adage that elders would tell when they saw children with bright futures.
Taku ivi, taku kiko, taku toto
Taku metua, noou te korero, noou te korero
Maitu taku manava
Noou e taku metua
Tei karuveti it e enua nei
Ei vaa piro na to uanga
Tei to vaa te pakari
Kua vai te kite, te mataku it e Atua
Ko toou, toou ia matutu
E tama ma, maine ma
Ariu mai o taringa
Tena te korero
Tena te marama
Mei te akinanga tapu i pokata
Tei toou rim ate karape
E karape no te pakari
E toki tarai no te vaka oraanga
No te tinitini tei noo i te ipukarea
Kua tarai ia ei vaka purua
Ko Iesu tei te veo
Ko Iesu tei te veo
Te kaveinga, kaveinga o te aroa
E vaevae orooro no taku ipukarea
Kua tutara kite rangi atea o rongo
E tamariki oro piako
E tamariki oro piako
A leader, visionary, true Cook Islander
Te Tika Mataiapo was a leader, a visionary who committed herself to countless causes, and a woman who embodied the Cook Islands spirit, warmth and hospitality.
Her involvement with numerous organisations and initiatives kept her busy, but still she had all the time in the world to listen to her people.
She was a businesswoman and promoted Cook Islands tourism on the tourism council and through her leading resort Little Polynesian, which earned multiple awards under her guidance.
As the president of the Koutu Nui, she worked to raise the profile of the countrys traditional leaders. She refused to get involved in Cook Islands politics though she was the first Pacific Islands woman to be nominated for the New Zealand Parliament as she valued her role as a traditional chief first.
She promoted Cook Islands culture, art, song and dance, and was part of the cultural and creative industry focus group that banded together this year.
She was a guiding light for young ambitious women and a long-time supporter of the Business and Professional Womens Association.
Te Tika was a member of the Cook Islands Voyaging Society executive committee. A veteran voyager herself, she supported the sons and daughters of her country who felt the call of the sea, and talked fondly of her experiences on Te Moana Nui O Kiva.
Te Tika was a strong proponent of environmental awareness, and often said that Cook Islanders are the custodians of their land and should treat it with respect.
She was involved in community life in every way possible, and her legacy looms large.
Her influence extended around the world to which her hundreds of friends can attest and she will be forever remembered as an exceptional Cook Islander.
- Rachel Reeves
Young Dorice Reid as a Radio Pacific talkback host in 1981. Photo courtesy of Escape Magazine. Te Tika Mataiapo / te tika 1
Dorice Reid knocking on doors as a National Party candidate. She was the first Pacific Islands woman to be nominated to run for the New Zealand parliament on the National party ticket. Photo courtesy of Escape Magazine. Te Tika Mataiapo / te tika 2
Te Tika Mataiapo Dorice Reid – poised and immaculate as she will always be remembered.
Te Tika Mataiapo at an investiture ceremony in 2007.
In past years Te Tika Mataiapo Dorice Reid organised multiple blues and jazz concerts at Little Polynesian. On more than one occasion bands she invited to perform would say they fell in love with Te Tika before they fell in love with the Cook Islands. Los Angeles blues and jazz singer Diana Harris wrote in an email yesterday. “Te Tika was a sister to me. She was gracious, kind and generous... a teacher of life to me without saying a word. Just by example. I love you Dorice, my heart is heavy.”
As a successful businesswoman, Te Tika Mataiapo Dorice Reid was an example for young ambitious Cook Islands women.
She was last weekend awarded the Patrons Award at a Business and Professional Womens Association event for her decades-long use of her skills of leadership, mentoring and active involvemenet and support (in BPW). She is an inspiration to all past and current members of BPW Cook Islands, BPW patron Helen Henry said upon presenting Te Tika with her plaque.
On Monday of this week, current and former executive members and presidents of the Cook Islands Womens organisations PPSEAWA (Pan-Pacific and Southeast Asia Womens Association) and BPW gathered to congratulate, celebrate and farewell Te Tika before she was to take up her appointment as Cook Islands High Commissioner in Wellington.
None of those present knew it would be her final Cook Islands function. Eleitino Paddy Walker, Henry, Mathilda Miria-Tairea and Dawn Baudinet spoke, but Walkers words are reprinted here. The womens organisations felt Walkers speech best captured Te Tikas essence.
Walker said: I find the great thing in this world is not so much where we stand as what direction we are going. These words, by Oliver Wendell Holmes, express Dorices sense of purpose and vividly her sense of courage and adventure; and her understanding of the fact that if we are to make progress forward there is a need for change. Over the many years Dorice has been in my life, her courageous attitude in the face of challenges of all kinds has aroused in me enormous admiration...We all bring you love and wish you courage this is the greatest gift we can give you. For you have shown us that nothing is more elegant than courage. I love the way you speak so positively. The way you think so positively. Your understanding that there is no doubt that what you think is what you get so you attract good things to you.
Many years ago when we were talking in New Zealand you told me you wanted to return to the Cook Islands and work with your people towards positive change for good. You have done that fully and positively - now you will continue this dream in another equally important way. You have achieved so much in your life!
Even when the props are pulled out from under you - as they have been from time to time - it gave you a positive sense of what is rock and what is sand. Take with you this little Chinese proverb and remember it came from your sisters in the Cook Islands. Keep a green tree in your heart and know the singing bird will come.
And from BPW and PPSEAWA, Aroa nui e aere ra wonderful sister to us all. We will cherish the memories of you and embrace your visions.
Woman of the Year Nadine Newnham also expressed her admiration for Te Tika, whom she considered a role model for all Cook Islands women:
Dorice was the epitome of a Cook Islands leader all grace and softness with a hint of the steel that lay beneath. She is a true mentor and role model for generations of Cook Islands women with a legacy that many will envy. A trail blazer in this life, she now goes on to prepare a new trail in heaven for us to follow.
Prayers of love and strength go out to her family and close friends. Aere ra, Eric and Nadine Newnham and family.
Artists recall outspoken advocate
Local artist and museum curator Mahiriki Tangaroa Local artist Joan Rolls-Gragg Atiu textile artist Andrea Eimke
Te Tika Mataiapo was an outspoken advocate of the arts.
Most recently she was part of a cultural and creative industries focus group that presented at the National Economic Development Summit.
She was constantly pushing for local artists and creators to collaborate with government to drive the industry forward.
You sailed in on your vaka, bringing with you a wealth of encouragement, words of wisdom, warmth and inspiration. To empower and strengthen the spirit of others was your special gift. You were a mentor in every respect, your firmness and directness to be greatly admired.
You were a custodian of culture and traditions, a protector, a provider, a living embodiment of what you believed in. You gave yourself so generously, an almost relentless determination to encourage peace and harmony among those who were around you.
It was only just days ago that we spoke at length about the health and strength of the human spirit and the importance of forging ahead. Maybe one day soon we will all come to understand the universal language, present among all living creatures and humans alike.
You are now above the rainbow that welcomed you at Te Avamoa, and among the dolphins, whales and tavake that greeted you with excitement. Your vision and spiritual livelihood will live on, in the hearts of many. Your words of comfort and guidance will be with me always. Aroa nui, Aere ra, Mahiriki.
She was an inspiring leader who listened to everyone. She strived for excellence in her life and was not afraid to change things to achieve her goals. She was a great human being. We will remember her
I first met Dorice in 1987 when I was preparing to stage the Atiu Fibre Arts Studios first exhibition on Rarotonga. Because I did not know many people on Rarotonga, having lived on Atiu since 1983, I thought of turning to the CI Tourism office in the hope that someone there would be able to help me put together a list of VIPs and interested people I should invite to the exhibitions opening at the Atiu Hostel.
I was directed to Dorice, then manager of the Tourism Office. She welcomed me with the warmth we have all known her for and sat down right away to give me a list and directions of whom to contact and invite. I am sure that the exhibitions huge success was to a great extent on account of this list. Dorice and I have remained friends ever since, our common love for tivaivai tying us together over all these years. Her beautiful heirloom pieces, a taorei that she sewed with her grandmother, mother and aunty, and her own first attempt at sewing a tivaivai for herself, designed and cut by her grandmother, have been displayed in several tivaivai exhibitions that I was privileged to curate and can also be found in my book.
Id like to think that at least one of them might accompany her on her final journey. When the Tivaivai Associations first president Sonya Kamana was made Secretary to the CI High Commission in Wellington, Te Tika was elected the new president. I remained the vice president and we worked together as a wonderful team until my resignation from the association in 2007.
I have loved her for her peace-loving, just and humble nature, for her immaculate taste, elegance and appreciation of beauty and, most of all, for her friendship and hospitality over all these years. She was a wonderful ambassador of her country and would have made a superb High Commissioner. It is a loss for our country that she never lived to fill that position.
Juergen and I will hold her memory dear and will miss her. I am sure that she is in Gods hands now and will rest in peace. My sincere condolences go to all of her family, colleagues, and friends who mourn her loss.
Cook Islands National Visual Artists Society in 2004: from left patron, Te Tika Mataiapo, Ross Pierce, Joan Rolls-Gragg, Jean Mason, Ani Exham and Loretta Reynolds.
Te Tika with Mahiriki Tangaroa.
A taorei that Te Tika Mataiapo sewed with her grandmother, featured here at Little Polynesian.
Ina Goodwin, Tiana Meyer and Te Tika Mataiapo Dorice Reid at The Edgewater.
Te Tika with Sir Terepai Maoate and Lady Maoate.
Remembering an advocate of culture
Te Tika Mataiapo was a long-time supporter of the University of the South Pacific, and recently became a member of the USP Cook Islands Campus advisory committee. Committee chairman Tevai Matapo remembers her here:
My work is inspired by my dedication to ensuring the preservation of our traditional knowledge and practices, which is based on our spiritual connection to the environment - Te Tika Mataiapo, 2009.
Te Tika Mataiapos strong and tireless advocacy of Cook Islands culture, creativity and scholarship was reflected in countless lectures, conference presentations and publications, both regionally and internationally.
Most recently she led the working group on cultural and creative industries which sought to combine the preservation of culture with innovative uses of new media.
Te Tika was strongly rooted in Cook Islands culture and environment. She recognised that part of the conservation and preservation of culture and natural environment, lay in its valuation by the tourism industry and worked long and hard towards this end.
She led efforts by the Koutu Nui to re-establish traditional cultural authority over resource management focusing on the raui of lagoons. The success of the raui system, she noted in 2009, has created a new awareness, understanding and change in the attitude of the community towards the environment and our resources. The lagoons are teeming with colourful fish and shops have increased their business in areas where tourists visit.
In recent years Te Tika was prominent in campaigns to declare the island of Suwarrow a sanctuary for birdlife and played a leading role with the Koutu Nui in action to prevent transgenic experimentation in the Cook Islands.
She was always personally courageous - battling illness, taking to the high seas in the vaka Te Au O Tonga, advocating causes that were sometimes unpopular or in advance of their time. In the midst of storms, she was always serene. She saw both sides of any argument and assisted others to a consensus. She was endlessly courteous but always determined.
In her own words, Like the ant who is industrious and respectfully greets every ant he meets, we must respect each other. We must work together in peace and harmony, to protect our planet for our future generations and all of its inhabitants. The responsible action that each one of us takes will make a difference.
Te Tika Mataiapo truly made a difference. She inspires us all to do the same and fill the great void that she now leaves behind. Farewell and God speed Te Tika Mataiapo.
Tributes to Te Tika Mataiapo Dorice Reid
The family of Sir Tom Davis
Dorice is that rare individual who carries a light within her. We considered her a part of the family and her friendship with Papa Tom and all of us was very special. She found time for everyone and her encouragement of young Cook Islanders is unmatched. Dorice was integral to many aspects of life here and she did everything well. May we all carry on her passion for our culture and our country. Her grace and elegance carried her through everything. We will miss her perceptive nature, sense of humour, and those private moments we had with her. Whether she was giving advice about how to store fruit for her great smoothies or providing insight to navigating lifes ups and downs, it is those private moments with her that will be missed the most. We are grateful for our time with her and her friendship will be deeply missed. Cant help but wonder who shell have at her first heavenly dinner party.
Tourism CEO Carmel Beattie
Te Tika, you were to me the quintessential Cook Islander passionate, brave, fun-loving and with your feet firmly planted in both your worlds your Polynesian culture and as a modern entrepreneur. Thank you for your wise counsel, your support, your passion and your quick laugh. You achieved so much in your time here on earth and your mana will live on.
It is moments like these that we stop and take stock of the power that our female colleagues, friends and family have in making impressions on our lives.
Te Tika Mataiapo Dorice Reid was a woman that stood by what she believed in and supported others to grow, understand and achieve.
Forever graceful and always giving, she led our community to places that broke boundaries, created acceptance and strove for cultural recognition devoid of prejudice.
It is with much sadness that we say goodbye to her but know that she now sits with her mother and sister watching over us.
You will be missed, Aunty.
Penny and Jack Maich
To my beautiful friend whom I have always placed on a pedestal and admired in all she did for her people. From going to birthday parties as a 6-year-old to entering Air New Zealand as a photographer and always seeing her there. I will miss you so much and the correspondence we shared. You were there for me always with that smile and I loved you for all you stood for.
Always in the periphery of my mind, but stationed firmly within my heart.
So in awe of you as a woman - an achiever - that I move aside in your presence.
But you have left now, and you compel me to move forward to strive to be an achiever if even at a lesser degree to strive nevertheless. One of the many legacies you leave behind.
I will continue to think of you when groundbreaking moments occur as you have been a part of so many. Our family loves you dearly and so thankful I conveyed that to you recently. Now my words end and the tears begin.
Aere ra, rest in love, to a Pacific sister, mentor, former work colleague, and dear friend.
What a lady, one of those you meet and always remember. A woman of great stature, an imposing presence, a special and unique incarnation of our peoples best.
A mentor to all of us, a woman to see as an example. A sea farer, a cultural guardian, independent of any political involvement, a tohunga of many trades.
What a loss for our people, but what a star to look at as a guide.
My beloved auntie, whom I have welcomed home in Havai several times, beautiful, natural and highly spirited...te vahine marama, raatira, e vahine purotu, te hina.
We will miss you and the way you could make simple things special and the hope you gave us all when things seemed difficult. Thank you for your mana, for your support, for your presence. Thank you on behalf of all of our people in Raromatai for being who you are. A haere ra, a haere ra , a haere ra!
Hanna and Otto from Berlin
When we visited the Cooks first in 1985, we had the fortune to get to know Dorice immediately and from that moment we never lost contact with this wonderful person.
She brought us so close to the people of the Cooks, that we started to visit this little country nearly every year from Germany, the other side of the world. Her warmth, her sharp spirit, as well as her wide field of knowledge made us always keen to come back to the Cooks. She became an important part of our lives and we will miss her so badly.
I still dont quite believe it. She always supported us at CITV and always had uplifting words to say every time I wanted to moan and grumble about my work.
D Devoted, delightful, dedicated
O Obedient, orderly, organised
R Responsible, responsive, reliable, respectful
I Intelligent, interesting, inquisitive
C Caring, courteous, considerate, composed
E Elegant, experienced, extraordinary
She was a contemporary island girl. Shell be remembered for being a great leader and always well dressed. Wherever she went, she wore a rito hat or floral head ei, muumuu or floral dress, flower in her ear or neck ei. Every time she talked, she really emphasised the importance of our culture, language, customs, values, land, etc. She displayed a lot of passion for her culture and anything related to the Cook Islands...shes what I call a real contemporary island girl.
Passionate for environment
Jacqui Evans, Te Ipukarea Society programme coordinator, remembers Te Tikas passion for the environment:
Te Tika Mataiapo was a superb leader and ambassador for the environment. She had strength, perseverance, courage, an intricate understanding of customary practice, gentle communication skills and an unfailing, rare ability to never criticise but to provide positive reinforcement. She also had a deep passion and appreciation for nature. With these leadership qualities she worked tirelessly for the environment. Most outstandingly, she led the re-establishment of marine raui by the Koutu Nui after the regular practice of raui had been abandoned in Rarotonga for over 40 years.
At a meeting in 1997 she said: If we are talking about establishing marine raui, then leave it to us because raui can only be declared by us.
With that, the Koutu Nui took the reins from government agencies that were considering the introduction of marine protected areas but were stuck in bureaucracy and legislation.
Her leadership put the Cook Islands on the global map in the marine conservation field.
An eloquent, passionate and powerful speaker Te Tika was invited to give keynote addresses by conferences worldwide eager to learn how the marine raui were established and why traditional knowledge and practice is so important.
Te Tika understood natures important place in our physical, cultural and spiritual realms. She highlighted the importance of holding on to our spirituality when she said in an interview: .our ancestors had this enormous respect for the environment. For instance, in the olden days, our ancestors would never cut a tree down to make a canoe without praying, without their karakia, praying for authority to take the life of that tree. Today, we just blatantly go and cut a tree down, and we dont think about the fact that it has a life.
This is a fundamental lesson that we can learn from Te Tika to respect nature. Protect Mother Nature and she will provide for you. Farewell Te Tika. You will be sincerely missed.
Students need help to make history
Hospitality Tourism Training Centre students Xenia Kae, Deana Paiti, Kevin Wichman and Josie Rattle preparing for next month’s Toque d’Or competition.
Four students from the Hospitality Tourism Training Centre (HTTC) will make history at New Zealands premier student culinary and restaurant service competition but only if you help them make it there first.
The Cook Islands students are hosting a swathe of fundraising dinners and lunches over the coming weeks in anticipation of next months Nestle Toque dOr competition in Auckland.
It will be the first time that foreign students have competed at the Torque dOr.
HTTC administration officer Pam Solomona said the students were excited by the prospect bringing island flair to the New Zealand peers and showcasing their potential to those already working in the industry.
They definitely have a sense of Cookie pride, Solomona said.
Theyll be making up a menu based on some traditional recipes but with more five-star dishes.
Tutor Sam Timoko said the menu would not be released until the day of the competition.
He said the competitiveness of the Toque dOr meant that he wanted to keep the schools menu as secret as possible before they hit the kitchen in Auckland.
The centre is holding a number of fundraising cook-offs over the coming weeks to help pay for the trip.
Solomona said the centre would be holding a number of fundraising dinners and lunches in the remainer of June. Three-course dinners and lunches would cost $25 and $18 respectively, but final details have not yet been confirmed so she asked people looking to contribute to check ahead of making plans.
The HTTC team will include chef students Josie Rattle and Kevin Wichman, and front of house students Xenia Kae and Deana Paiti with tutors Sam Timoko and Martin Whale also making the journey.
Cook Islands Chef Organisation president Tokerau Turia, national secretary Karleen Taokia and member Jezebel Tamasese-Karika will also attend, acting as observatory judges at the event.
The Toque dOr competition will be held at the ASB Auckland Showgrounds in Greenlane on Monday, July 18.
Spreading peace in the Pacific
Two young Cook Islands adults have been enlisted to help spread peace in the Pacific with the message one ocean, one people.
John Taivairanga and Tamara File will travel to Auckland this month as the Cook Islands representatives for the 2011 Wansolwara Youth Peace-building Training Conference.
They will meet with 18 other delegates aged between 18 and 25 from around the Pacific region for the four-day programme focussing on regional solidarity, peace building and conflict resolution.
Commonwealth Youth Programme Pacific centre programme manager Paul Peteru said John and Tamara were chosen from an outstanding selection of applicants for the active roles they play in the local community.
He said the conference, which will be held June 20-23, would help the 20 Pacific representatives spread peace in the region.
The knowledge, experience and perspective that this group of participants bring to the programme will, I am sure, empower young people across the region to promote peace within their own communities, he said.
John is currently working at the youth and sports division of the Ministry of Internal Affairs and Tamara as the national administrator of the Cook Islands National Youth Council.
Tamara said it was time for young people to commit to creating a peaceful world.
Young people are vital to a peaceful world. It is time they rose up and made a stand. Youth are referred to as the future, the reality is they are the present, Tamara said.
John said the Wansolwara conference would provide him and Tamara with the chance to shape the attitudes of Cook Islands youth and build stronger ties within the country as well as throughout the Pacific region.
The Wansolwara training gives the opportunity to educate, empower, enlighten and encourage our people on how peace-building can make our communities and country a safe, clean and healthy environment for us all, he said.
Tamara said that sharing what they learnt at the conference would also help Cook Islands youth develop into more well-rounded adults in the years to come.
Young people are open to change and are willing to accept new ideas. What they learn now will shape the person they are to become.
If we can lend them that guiding hand it could be the difference between them turning into a good human being or a misguided one.
The Wansolwara conference was developed by young people who represented the region at the Nkabom Commonwealth Youth Leadership Programme held in Rwanda in 2010.
It is supported and funded by the Commonwealth Youth Programme and the United Nations.
- Eric Parnis/Release
Tributes flow for Te Tika Mataiapo
Te Tika Mataiapo Dorice Reid, Sir Tom and Lady Carla Davis at Otago University in Dunedin.
Lady Carla Davis, the widow of Sir Thomas Davis, former Cook Islands Prime Minister shares her sorrow over the death of Te Tika Mataiapo Dorice Reid:
It is with deep sadness and shock, that many of us have just learned about the sudden passing of Te Tika Mataiapo Dorice Reid.
Te Tika Mataiapo Dorice Reid was truly an Extraordinary Leader... A Star Cook Islander and so much more. She worked tirelessly and was passionate about creating a better environment; cultural enrichment; promotion of traditional knowledge; a better life for Pacific Island women and all Cook Islanders.
She not only proudly represented the Koutu Nui, but served all her people and country with honour and dignity. She created beauty in everything she undertook. Little Polynesia is but one example. She lifted the spirit of everyone she encountered. She would have made a superb High Commissioner.
Dorice was also a very dear friend of my late husband, (Sir Tom Davis) and mine for over 30 years and we loved her dearly. She sailed many long voyages with Papa Tom on the Te Au Tonga and worked with him and Captain Paeau to promote the Voyaging Society.
She visited us in New Zealand, during our involvement with the Aotearoa One project and Te Wananga programme, and when Sir Tom was High Commissioner. For all the years I knew her, she always welcomed us with open arms, every time we returned home.
Dorice was the hostess with the mostest and put on many lovely dinners for us in her beautiful home. She was very special to us, so we chose her to perform our wedding ceremony, which she did ever so beautifully.
Dorice supported our endeavour with South Seas University (founded by Dr. Reza Chowdhury, Lily and Rod Henderson) for which Sir Tom was its Chancellor. She joined us in Dunedin, in celebration of my husbands honorary law degree from Otago. I will never forget how she comforted me, in my grief, at my husbands funeral, in July 2007. Then, just one year ago, after her beloved sister Jeannine (who we also loved dearly) suddenly passed away, I reciprocated to comfort her, in her grief. Who would ever have imagined our lovely Dorice would leave us, so soon afterwards.
Dorice, dear sister, you will be terribly missed, but your beautiful spirit will remain with us forever. You are much loved by everyone who was blessed by your presence. Te Atua, Te Aroa nui.... Aere ra, aere ra Lady Carla Davis, Queensland, Australia, 20 June 2011. (Dorices 68th Birthday)
Te Tika supportive and inspirational
It is with great sadness that we acknowledge the unexpected passing of Te Tika Mataiapo Dorice Reid. In the short time we were lucky enough to know her, she was always cheerful, thoughtful and very supportive, and an inspiration to many. Ka kite ano i a koe, Barbara and Colin Moore.
Farewell to voyaging sister
It is with heavy heart that we accept the sad news that our wonderful voyaging sister Te Tika Mataiapo has departed on her heavenly voyage. One could not wish for a more sincere, true and supportive person than Te Tika Mataiapo who touched so many people worldwide with her generous, gentle heart. She set a high standard by literally living her life to reflect the literal translation of her title Te Tika Mataiapo. Rest in peace our sister, words cannot describe how we will miss you. Aroa nui Te Aturangi and Eva Nepia-Clamp .
Loss of Maori sister
Ive lost my Maori sister, we are all shocked and cannot believe shes gone. No words can explain how we feel but I know she will stay in our souls forever, able to reach our hearts with her gentle touch and to give us energy, hope and warm cares. When we left Raro we left there a piece of us but we took with us all our friends and kept them in our heart, and Dorice is still there. She gave us Maori names to show we were like one great family together with her. Aroa nui, Beatrice Maiata, Corrado Tu Maiata, Federica Anuanua, Andrea Te Mana Nui, Gaby Te Pua O Te O.
True spirit of the Cook Islands
It is with great sadness that we received the news of Dorices passing. We extend our condolences to her family and all the people of the Cook Islands. Dorice embodied the true spirit of the islands. She was an articulate ambassador, sharing her love of her country and culture. Ever gracious, kind and generous we became friends over the years and it was always a delight to spend time in her company. Dear friend, you are missed and you are very much in our thoughts and prayers. Carol Vahlbruch and family, Vancouver, Canada.
Warrior woman for peace
Dearest Te Tika, the news of your passing has just reached our family - it is such a devastating blow to us all particularly to my father Te Huirangi and myself as we have had opportunities in the past to spend such wonderful times together to plan, strategise and implement small steps towards making a positive difference in our little corners of the universe. My tears pour forth as I write this tribute to you dear friend, warrior woman for peace, warrior woman for justice, warrior woman of Polynesia. My heart is heavy as I consider going forward without the sound of your voice, the lilt of your laughter and the wisdom of your words beside me in this physical world of ours. However your passion, dedication and commitment to the kaupapa that you lead and supported in the past inspires me to keep moving forward. Dearest friend, love and blessings on your journey home to meet with the ancient ones. Arohanui Te Urutahi Waikerepuru, Aotearoa.
Woman of many roles
Our family is struggling to come to terms with Te Tikas departure and we will have to rely on time and the beautiful memories she has left us to heal the deep sadness in our hearts. Te Tika is one of the greatest people we have had the privilege of knowing and there are few words that can really describe our feelings at this time. She was passionate in everything she did. The Cook Islands and the extended Pacific family has lost a gracious and beautiful Polynesian vahine, mother, auntie, sister, mentor, leader, patron, seafarer, friend, guardian, speaker, ambassador, custodian, adviser, confidant, entrepreneur, communicator, dancer, counsellor. Thomas and Lizzy Koteka
Very good friend
Gisela and myself are deeply saddened about the sudden passing away. She was a great women and a very, very good friend. Thea Pijpers, Gisela Puttini
True to words and deeds
I am so saddened to learn of the sudden passing of the late Dorice Reid. I have known Dorice since I returned with my family to live in the Cook Islands some twenty years ago. Te Tika Mataiapo is truly a strong Maori leader, who is true unto her words and deeds. She is tireless, does everything at 101 percent no less and an excellent ambassador for her people and the country. Her passing will leave a big gap in our society for leaders of her quality are hard to come by. We, in New Zealand and the people of the Cook Islands elsewhere, our Polynesian and Pasifika people wherever we are will sadly miss her presence. To you all back home, to the families of the late Te Tika Mataipo, our thoughts are with you at this time of your sorrow. Airere Dorice. Jonah Tisam, Auckland Univesity of Technology, NZ.
Sailing her eternal voyage
A great Polynesian ambassador Te Tika Mataiapo who is sailing for her eternal voyage with the Lord. Most of us are new generations that heard so much beautiful tasks you have done in our ipukarea, and we were looking forward in welcoming you as the new High Commissioner in New Zealand for the Wellington post. Aere ra our Polynesian ambassador. Rest In Peace. From the Chairperson and the Hutt Valley Cook Islands Youth, Wellington. New Zealand.
An honourable life
To the family, friends & associates of Te Tika Dorice Reid.Her loss will be unimaginable she was my inspiration, companion and the most noble of friends.
I will always remain so very humble to know that I spent special time with you on Wednesday, unknown that you were so near to the next part of your journey. Honour is the virtue that I have chosen that
represents your life to me. Supreme honour lies in self respect, in high resolve and noble purpose, in integrity and moral quality, in immaculacy of mind. Soar with the angels, dearest Dorice. Pat Litherland, Auckland NZ.