2018 Rotary International Youth Exchange
District 9910 Marae Weekend
Thomas Portious’(4th from the left)
previously worked as a bus driver, doing
tours and Intercity, Thomas was glad to volunteer his services to Rotary IYE transporting the Auckland based students to Whangarei and around Northland.
This is a weekend for inbound and outbound
Rotary IYE Students to stay on Pehiaweri Marae. They participate in cultural
experiences on the Marae and away at places like Waitangi, Ruapekapeka Pa, Waka
Ama at Kowharewa Bay on the Tutakaka Coast. As they stay on the Marae, they
have cultural experiences, including going through a Powhiri, learn Kapa Haka
and get involved in Hangi preparation, learning Tikanga Maori and learning
about the history and traditions of the Maori. The outbound students who will
be leaving in January for their year away in another country, it gives them
skills and knowledge to be able to share with others when they go overseas.
I was an exchange student to Wisconsin in
the United States of America in 2007. This weekend is one of 3 weekends that
are attended to prepare the outbound students for their year away and is the
most important of all of them. I love being involved with this weekend and had
the opportunity for my partner, Ashlee, and 5-month-old daughter, Molly, to
come up with us. I have done this a few times before, but it was the first time
that Ashlee and Molly had been up that far north to Waitangi. They both loved
it and learned so much, Molly especially was fascinated with the Kapa Haka
performance and performers at Waitangi.