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Michael Elkington and others discussed the possibility of conveneing a series of Open Space events around the ToW? day next year.
Kia Ora (Anee)Everyone, we "opened space" to generate some free-flow korero(talking)amounst those present, about how we can best bring our community together and Celebrate our national day. Without throwing mud (literally). Current political climate is NOT favourable to things Maori (when has it ever been otherwise), but through this open space process we will plan to achieve the following:
1) Call together the planning group.
Those present forwarded names of people with a passion who would be invited to have input/help facilitate/have networks who are interested in this Kaupapa (cause).Convening on the 15th April 2004 at Whakatu Marae.
2) Planning group to focus on 3 OST
OST #1 - A call to the entire community, local councils, Crown Agents, general public (especially), to come and open space with us, flesh out what are the issues, for us all, as a community. OST #2 - A call to the entire community for a 2nd open space to decide how best we can celebrate Waitangi Day as a community. OST #3 - The Actual celebrations of Waitangi Day as a contributing community. (maybe this isnt open space...maybe it is?).
there was a strong feeling of commitment during our first open space on this topic as these are issues currently faceing our people from our kids, to our old people. We NEED these oppertunities to engage our Treaty partners and provide (offer) some understanding.
Na Te Atua e Manaaki MikeE?
Re OST#1: I have done this type of open space a lot, inviting First Nations people and non-First Nations to sit together and imagine what their community should be like. It's about gathering together, figuring out the real issues and beginning to develop understanding together. IN these kinds of OST events, sometimes the conversations get heated, but at the end of the day, it's impossible to leave not knowing more about people than you started with. With the foreshore issues and the current political environment currently in play, there is a lot of passion around Pakeha-Maori relations at the moment, and this is an ideal opportunity to invite people to converse together about the future.
You can read about one such project I did at http://www.chriscorrigan.com/clients/index.html on the December 19 entry.
Re OST#2: I was struck by the idea in the practice workshop that New Zealanders (Maori and Pakeha) need to not only honour the Treaty but also to embody it. The Treaty should offer up a template for relations between Maori and Pakeha. It doesn't matter how it has been interpreted in the past, what matters is how everyone chooses to embody it now. What would the Treaty look like if we lived it in our daily lives? In other words, what are the things we can do to create and solidify the relationship between Maori and Pakeha. That wildlife sanctuary in the old resevoir is a good example.
Re OST#3: Along with all of the other events on Treaty day (including the protesting and mudslinging, inevitable as it may be) the gift of providing Maori and Pakeha a positive open space to strengthen relations is a beautiful gesture. Even if it isn't the only thing that happens that day, to have people committed to taking the time on treaty day to talk about what the treaty means from a personal perspective and find ways to live those principles, well that makes me buzz with excitement.
I'll lay out some other ideas as they occur to me.