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Takahi te Taniwha

We support individuals, groups, and have a supported accommodation whare for tangata whaiora who want to reduce harm and or stop the addiction of alcohol and drugs.

Are you ready to take up the challenge?

Takahi te Taniwha is our invitation to you to consider making a change in your life. It is time for our wahine and tane to reclaim the mana of our tipuna and reject the negative influence of alcohol and drugs in our lives.


We have created this programme to empower and support you to do just that. Save this page and check back regularly as we continue to add new videos to help provide inspiration to those who pick up this challenge.

We have also included links below to the resources and support He Waka Tapu and our community can provide. 

Kua takoto te manuka

Kua takoto te manuka

The leaves of the Manuka tree have been laid down.

Māori have always persevered in the face of great adversity and overcome phenomenal challenges, from separating the earth mother (Papatūānuku) from the sky father (Ranginui) to creating a new world of light and understanding, navigating the distant oceans guided by the stars, and standing up against systemic racial bias and discriminatory laws. 

There was a time when our whanau were prohibited from applying their traditional healing methods and punished for speaking their native language.

There was a time when alcohol and drugs entered into our whakapapa and became a normalised approach to coping with our stressful lives. That time is now. How will you respond to this challenge?

Today we are facing the negative impact of alcohol and other drugs upon our whanau more than everHow do we implement positive change to protect the future of our whakapapa?

Want to find out more about Takahi
te Taniwha?

You are the seed sown from the highest heavens, that you may not be lost.

This whakataukī speaks of the connection tangata whenua have with Ngā Atua and highlights the whakapapa of this through traditional narratives.

It also makes reference to Rangiātea as both a physical place (our ancestral homeland where ngā waka departed) as well as a metaphysical place (the house where the Baskets of Knowledge where originally held).

You are created of unlimited potential, and originate from our infinite creator, Io Matua Kore.

You will always be connected to your ancestral heritage and therefore you can never be lost.

Can you reduce the harm of substance use for the seed that is yet to be sown?

He Kakano koe i ruia mai i Rangi Atea kia kahore kore e ngaro

Kua takoto te manuka

Want to find out more about Takahi
te Taniwha?

He Waka Eke Noa

He Waka Eke Noa

A waka we are all in on a journey of discovery.  One heart beat, one waka. 

“Ko Io whatata, Ko Io whatamai" 

The ceaseless movements of Io Matua Kore upon the face of the waters 

"Ko hekeheke i nuku" 

The form of Raki was raised on high 

"Ko hekeheke i papa"

The form of Papatuanuku emerged from the depths

These words are from a chant called ”Te Whanautaka o te Aoraki” about Kai Tahu creation stories.

Waka are traditional vessels that originally brought Māori to Aotearoa from Hawaiki, our ancestral homelands. This waka represents a metaphorical vehicle of change that can help transform someone from one state of being or pattern of behaviours to another.  A waka we are all in on a journey of discovery.  

Who is in your waka? What direction are you heading? How are you going to reduce the harm within your whanau caused by alcohol and drugs?

Want to find out more about Takahi
te Taniwha?

"Aroha ki te tangata" derives from other whakataukī "He taonga rongonui te aroha ki te tangata" - Goodwill and love towards others is a precious treasure and "Aroha ki te tangata, Ahakoa ko wai te tangata" - Love people, in spite of who they are.

In the context of substance misuse these whakataukī are very relevant, as whānau can be emotionally torn between love for their whānau members with substance misuse issues, often stemming from unresolved pain and trauma and the behaviours directly associated with them.

What can you do?

  • Allow whanau to define their own space and time and to meet on their own terms.
  • Take notice of the far reaching ripple effects that substances have on our people
  • Focus on the devastation caused when you are impaired by substances
  • Ask what will it take for you to consider change?

Many refer to the word "aroha" as love, but if we break it down, we get the words "aro" meaning to focus,  pay attention to and "ha" or "hā" meaning breath, the essence of. A different interpretation of “aroha” could be to focus our essence into the things we care for, or to be more aware of the impact of our presence on others.

Aroha Ki Te Tangata

Kua takoto te manuka

Want to find out more about Takahi
te Taniwha?

Me mahi tahi tātou mo te oranga o te whānau

Me mahi tahi tātou mo te oranga o te whānau
Me mahi tahi tātou mo te oranga o te whānau

Our whakatauaki me mahi tahi tatou mo te oranga o te whanau, is a call to kaimahi who join us in the mahi to assist whanau to reach their full potential.

It is also a wero to whanau, especially nga tane, to look at what they do to promote healthy respectful relations within their whanau, and how they whakamana others: nga wahine and nga tamariki to achieve their potential.

This is what we ask our kaimahi to do when they come on board our waka, that they tautoko whanau who access our services but also they live this kaupapa in their personal lives as well.

Working together is the key to ensuring that we can all  achieve the moemoea of healthy, respectful, non-abusive whanau.

Want to find out more about Takahi
te Taniwha?

Ngā Whakataukī and Ngā Whakatauākī (proverbs) play an integral role within Māori culture. They are often used as a reference point in speeches and also as guidelines spoken to others to emphasise concepts and ideas.

Te reo Māori is a poetic language often merging historical events or holistic perspectives with underlying messages which are extremely influential through a Māori world view.

They have been used in this context as an approach to gently challenge ourselves and our whānau to continue to develop awareness and understanding of the impact that substance abuse may have within our own lives, and to plant seeds around to the possibility of reducing the negative impact it can have on our whānau, hāpu, Iwi and wider community.

Tihei Mauri Ora.

Ngā Whakataukī

Ngā Whakataukī and Ngā Whakatauākī

Want to find out more about Takahi
te Taniwha?

Takahi te Taniwha FAQs

How can He Waka Tapu help me reduce my drinking?
What is the challenge you are talking about?
How can I pick up the challenge?
Who is in your waka?

  Free Phone: 0800 HE WAKA

Phone: +64 3 373 8150
Fax: +64 3 381 3207

  Email: reception@hewakatapu.org.nz

  Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/hewakatapunz/

Open Hours: Monday-Friday 8:30am to 5:30pm

161 Pages Road, Wainoni, Christchurch 8061, New Zealand
PO Box 150 37, Aranui, Christchurch, New Zealand

© 2021 He Waka Tapu