Whenua Ūkaipō: Ko Au te Whenua, Ko te Whenua ko Au
Waitematā: Tāmaki-mā-kaurau / Te Araroa
“Ko wai au a muri i te whakamomori…… Waiho i te toipoto, kaua i te toiroa”
Te Whenua Ūkaipō – the place we are from, the place that nourishes the soul, the place we know we belong. Te Whenua Ūkaipo is the name for a journey, a journey reconnecting whānau in Auckland to their homeland in Te Araroa. As the whānau follow the path of their ancestors back to Te Araroa, they reconnect to their roots, to their heritage and wellbeing.
Whenua Ūkaipō; “Ko au te whenua, ko te whenua ko au” – “I am of the land and the land is me”, brings whānau together who have suffered the loss of a loved one to suicide. The programme encourages whānau voice and the sharing of experiences, to break the silence that surrounds suicide, and ultimately to bring healing to all involved.
Whenua Ūkaipō supports the healing of the spirit that comes from being a part of our natural environment. Through reconnecting to their tūrangawaewae the healing energy of the maunga and the abundance of the moana and awa, provides a natural support for whānau. Through embracing these sacred spaces and connecting to one another, whānau remember those who have gone and move back into Te Ao Mārama, through a collective journey, moving through a healing process together (toipoto).
In addition to this emotional journey of reconnection, a website has been developed to show the Whenua Ūkaipō journey. This website resource was created to assist those impacted by suicide. Among these pages you will discover a collection of experiences and stories from the Whenua Ūkaipō journey and the whānau overcoming their struggles of grief and loss. These experiences are shared in the hope that other whānau will be inspired to move through their own struggles or grief.
*This whānau initiative is proudly supported by Te Au (and Te Rau Ora) through the Māori Suicide Prevention Fund (2020-2021).