Pōwhiri guide

Find out what to expect from a pōwhiri/welcome at the University of Auckland’s Faculty of Education and Social Work marae in Epsom.

Te Aka Matua ki Te Pou Hawaiki Marae Pōwhiri Guidelines

Protocols differ from marae to marae and this guide gives staff, students and visitors an insight into how the pōwhiri/welcome is carried out at the marae at the Faculty of Education and Social Work.

All newcomers to the campus must be afforded an official welcome at the marae as close as possible to their arrival on campus, i.e. before students start classes or before new staff start in their new position.

If the weather is fine the pōwhiri will be held outside on the marae ātea/courtyard. If the weather is wet/cold and the group is 60 or more people the pōwhiri will be diverted to the Music Auditorium (B Block).

Pōwhiri procedure

Groups will select a kaikaranga (an adult female) able to return the welcoming call from tangata whenua/host and one or two kaikorero (adult male speakers) to respond to the kaikorero tangata whenua/host speeches of welcome.

The group gathers together closely at the waharoa which is the gateway to the marae ātea (forecourt between the waharoa and the wharenui/carved house).

The karanga (welcoming call) from tangata whenua/host (adult female) is given. This acknowledges the arrival of manuhiri (visitors) and invites manuhiri to move slowly and respectfully onto the marae led by an adult female followed by women and children, in turn followed by the men, i.e., men should position themselves at the back of the women.

Please ensure all mobile phones are turned off, nobody is eating and everyone is respectfully listening to the kaikaranga while moving onto the marae and during the procedure of the pōwhiri.

Visitors will stop approximately 10 metres in front of the carved house and a minute’s silence will be observed (bowing our heads) to remember our loved ones - both tangata whenua and manuhiri - that have passed on.

The karanga also acknowledges the kaupapa (reason) for their visit, who the visitors are, and, if known, where they are from. Finally the karanga accepts the manuhiri have come in peace.

Once manuhiri have reached their seats, they should remain standing until the kaikorero tangata whenua indicates that they may sit.

Order of speeches

First a waiata/song is to be sung by the host; manuhiri/visitors also are asked to sing the waiata if they know the words. A karakia/prayer is then recited.

The first kaikorero tangata whenua/host speaker will open up the welcoming speeches, followed by a waiata, then kaikorero manuhiri/speaker for the visitors will be offered the right of reply, which on the marae should be in Māori.

There may be more than one speaker on the manuhiri side. Each speech is followed by an appropriate waiata. Men only are to sit in the front row of seats provided. The last speaker is to sit on the chair closest to the carved house. Therefore the person seated on his left is to speak first.

If there is a koha it is to be laid down by the last speaker for the manuhiri followed by a waiata. This will then be picked up and acknowledged by the tangata whenua.

The last speaker from the tangata whenua/host will now stand to complete the protocol of speeches. This completes the pōwhiri, and manuhiri will now be invited to move across to hariru/shake hands or hongi with the tangata whenua/host.

This in turn is followed by morning or afternoon tea.

We ask that manuhiri respect a tidy dress code. Absolutely no sports shorts, singlets or unpresentable dress attire. If you are late, do not walk onto the marae or into the carved house. That would be disrespectful.

Kia ora koutou. You are now tangata whenua and part of the faculty whānau.