5 May 2014

Marae given $80,000 to fix wharekai

6:32 am on 5 May 2014

A South Island marae has accepted a donation to repair its wharekai damaged during the 2011 Canterbury earthquakes.

A new day dawns for the Rapaki Marae wharekai.

A new day dawns for the Rapaki Marae wharekai. Photo: PHOTO NZ

The Christchurch Earthquake Appeal Trust offered Rapaki Marae in Lyttelton $80,000 to fix the 50 year old dinning hall that sustained structural damage.

Ngai Tahu said it was the most seriously affected marae in its takiwa (tribal region) - Te Wai Pounamu.

Ngati Wheke hapu and Rapaki Marae general manager Kopa Lee said the aim was to get the wharekai ready in time to host manuhiri for the national Matatini cultural festival next year.

He planned to have the dinning hall available for the influx of roopu from around the motu who will perform at the major kapa haka event 4-8 March 2015.

The Ngai Tahu man said their application to the Christchurch Earthquake Appeal Trust was their first successful attempt at requesting financial aid.

He said it was fortunate that the whare tupuna or the meeting house that was built in 2010 stood up to the quake, but sad for the dinning hall.

Mr Lee said they would plan an earthquake-proof wharekai to last another 50 years.