Best Book, Best Writers, Best Bookshop…

(Charmaine’s unabashedly personal views…) A Teaching Life, by Carol White, has just been published by The Cuba Press.  It has been eleven years in the making, since Carol retired from her position as Co-Principal of Selwyn College, in East Auckland.   I was delighted to be asked to write a foreword to it, and then to launch […]

Charm from the Chathams

Kaa’i and Francesca, our friends from Rekohu/Chatham Islands have been in Auckland again, this time supporting and judging the culinary efforts of children in South Auckland, and extending the marketing of their new unique freeze-dried honey from the Chathams.  They are also finalists in the NZ Artisan Awards…to be decided later in the year.. It’s […]

Matariki in Tamaki Makaurau

The programme for Matariki in Tamaki Makaurau is enormous, these days – well over a hundred activities and events all around the city. We chose three special events when we came back from our holiday in the South Island. Te Hono-  stories from Maori myth and history about Tamaki Makaurau – in the Town Hall […]

Te Wai Pounamu: Monday 24 June-Tuesday 2 July

This winter we decided to take a short break in the South Island of Aotearoa , rather than on a  warm island in the Pacific to the north. So Tanya organised a journey to Marlborough, Kaikoura and Christchurch.  In Marlborough we wanted to learn more about the Wairau Bar and Moahunter history there;  in Kaikoura […]

And finally, a celebration… a political activity…and a great writer

Charmaine celebrated her 77th birthday on Thursday 11 July, and Tanya had organised  a lovely day- a cuppa in bed and a beautiful gift, breakfast at a cafe in Grey Lynn, and a surprise outing in the evening- all Charmaine  knew in advance was to be ready for an Uber at 5.40pm.  We went outside […]

Postscript: Oranga Tamariki enquiry: a letter from Laura O’Connell Rapira

Some of you who read our newsletters will have received the letter below as supporters of Action Station.  But for those who have not seen it, we would like to share this very fine statement by Laura  O’Connell Rapira, the Director of Campaigns at Action Station: Over the weekend, I had the honour and privilege […]

Reflections on Racism: Owning our Obligations

Anyone watching recent television coverage of the attempt by Oranga Tamariki to remove a new-born baby from its young Maori mother in Hawke’s Bay Hospital must have been as appalled as we were.  Especially wrong was an apparent failure of Oranga Tamariki to involve the very strong tribal leadership of the local area to assist […]

Let’s Deal With It: A Trans-Tasman Campaign Towards Racial Equity

On Friday 14 June we went to this conference organised by Shakti New Zealand and Australia. Shakti had done an outstanding job in bringing together leaders from a wide range of organisations to talk about how we can move forward in dealing with white supremacist thinking and community and organisational racism. The first step is […]