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Arutanga Koni Raoni fundraiser collects over $60,000

Tuesday 10 January 2023 | Written by Melina Etches | Published in National, Outer Islands

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Arutanga Koni Raoni fundraiser collects over $60,000
Oire Arutanga residents dance around through the villages of Aitutaki in the January 2023 Koni Raoni. MARIA TUORO/23010921

Oire Arutanga on Aitutaki wrapped up the island’s Koni Raoni event for the festive period.

The fundraiser held on Monday, January 2 raised over $60,000.

Arutanga started their rounds at 9am sharp travelling through the villages on the island – dancing and singing, receiving ei and donations and feasting along the way.

Maria Tuoro recalls following the Koni Raoni as a young girl. She flew from Rarotonga to Aitutaki to participate in the event last week.


Families participate in the Aitutaki January 2023 Koni Raoni hosted by the village of Arutanga. MARIA TUORO/23010935

“It was brilliant and very special,” said Tuoro.

The day was humid and light showers helped to cool things down and keep everyone going.

“Watching the little babies, toddlers, mapu, mama’s and papa’s following the Koni Raoni with many lasting through to the end was just amazing,” Tuoro said.


Young ladies from Arutanga get into the Aitutaki January 2023 Koni Raoni. MARIA TUORO/23010920

Aitutakians who were visiting the island from overseas also participated actively and danced their way through to the end, Tuoro added.

The Koni Raoni event is exclusive to the island of Aitutaki. It is a traditional exchange between oire or villages that is held over the Christmas and New Year season to raise funds for the hosting village.

Every year a different village takes turns at hosting the event.

The 2022 Boxing Day Koni Raoni was hosted by Reureu which raised the final total of $69,711.30.