MCH and Tuia Encounters 250 Tuia Encounters 250 – A National Commemoration Launched in Tairawhiti

In 2019, New Zealand will acknowledge 250 years since the first sustained onshore meetings between Māori and Europeans with a national commemoration called Tuia – Encounters 250.

Tuia 250 is about the people and place of Aotearoa New Zealand - what brought us together, the challenges we face and how we weave our cultures and values into a future we will be proud to leave for our grandchildren.

Tuia 250 will recognise the extraordinary voyaging traditions and cultures of Te Moana Nui a Kiwa (the Pacific), the exceptional feats of Pacific voyagers, their mātauranga (knowledge), innovation and non-instrument navigation prowess and their decision to settle in Aotearoa many generations ago.

Tuia 250 will also acknowledge the feats of European explorers, the technology they developed and their first encounters with the people of this place when James Cook, Tupaia and others on the Endeavour arrived in 1769.

A wānanga for the nation, Tuia 250 will encourage discussion and debate, reflection and contemplation and bring a broad range of perspectives to the stories we will tell of this place we call home.

Our inspiration

The tauparapara (prayer) Te Tangi o te Matuhi was gifted by Te Hā pakeke Charlie Pera. It speaks of the intangible bonds established between people when they listen, unite and work together as one.
Kia whakarongo ake au
Ki te tangi a te manu nei
A te Mātūī
“Tūī, tūī, tuituia”
Tuia i runga
Tuia i raro
Tuia i waho 
Tuia i roto
Tuia i te here tāngata

I listen
to the cry of the bird
The Mātūī
Calling “tūī, tūī, tuituia”
That it be woven above,
as it is below
Woven without,
as it is within
Interwoven with the threads of humanity

For more information on the national programme visit the
Manatū Taonga the Ministry for Culture and Heritage website