. . . . by Rawinia Parata - GDC Councillor
It seems we cannot talk about Te Tairawhiti without mentioning our experience of climate change in real time. Yesterday, we were able to celebrate the opening of the new Emergency Coordination Centre which will house the Tairawhiti Emergency Management Office staff, and during an event, will be the primary headquarters for CDEM and our agency and iwi partners.
The whare was given the name Te Manawa Whakarauora, acknowledging the purpose of the building and all the people that will use it, the preservation and protection of life and of our region.
4 carved pou adorn the walkway to the whare, they are Tawhitimatea, Tangaroa, Papatuanuku and Ruaumoko, gods of weather and winds, the ocean and sea life, Mother earth, and earthquakes.
Ben Green, our Tairawhiti Controller and head of the Tairawhiti Emergency Management Office (TEMO) spoke to the crowd who'd gathered to share in this celebration, he said it was time to take the politics out of operations. The sentiment was supported by the collective. He was immensely proud of the way our region has not only coped but grown from one event to another. That our people have proven ourselves to be skilled and committed to each other and our region.
It made me realise, no one organisation can protect from the ongoing effects of climate change, that we must all play to our strengths, lean on each other and contribute to the greater picture, a great and thriving Tairawhiti.
Te Manawa Whakarauora is a step in that direction.