Steve Chadwick, Mayor of Rotorua and a former Minister of Conservation and Women's Affairs sketches the partnerships and challenges that have fostered her journey in a bicultural world, from the Maori boyfriend of her early teens to her Council’s recently signed iwi partnership with Te Arawa.
She was speaking In the 13th of a series of annual lectures launched by the New Zealand Maori Council to monitor the rebuilding of harmonious relationships between Maori and Pakeha in the years of the 21st century leading up to by the bi-centennial of the nation in 2040..
."Ehara taku toa I te toa t akitahi engari. He toa takitini ke"
My strength does not come from me alone, my strength comes from many'
My lens on bi-culturalism has been shaped by my exposure to the Maori world since meeting my husband John at 14 years of age in small-town Hastings. From our journey together and our experiences and the things that we have chosen to get involved with, there is a common thread of tolerance, fairness, equity and doing the right thing.
We bring our life experiences to the table. Mine have been inbued by the fact that I have learned to be every bit as bicultural as my husband. “He knows how to walk in two worlds and so do I.