What is 'Mana Tiaki'?
Tiaki means keeper or guardian and Mana translates as influence or power. It means guardianship with a sacred purpose, to preserve it for future generations. The keeper has the power or the ability to keep our culture and heritage alive. Mana Tiaki also refers to our responsibility as guardians of these islands the environment.
We are blessed with wonderful spiritual, cultural and natural environment, which both nourishes and protects us. To nourish and protect it in return, we must have the Mana to be resolute and aware of our environment and our traditions.
The more we become aware of the environment, the more we will learn to use it sustainably and therefore pass it on in good condition to future generations of Cook Islanders. Retaining absolute guardianship of our spiritual and cultural traditions is very important so that our future generations will be proud to share their heritage. This value guides our development so that growth and change is tempered with our responsibility to minimise and manage impact.
AU AKATEREANGA TIAKI - OUR PRINCIPLES AS GUARDIANS
How we develop and grow the tourism industry in union with how we develop overall as a nation.
AO RANGI refers to the natural wonders under the heavens - the environment. AKONO denotes using our natural resources sustainably to prevent complete loss or damage.
Our role is as guardians of the environment but more specifically how we approach the sustainable use of our natural resources. We are responsible for the continued sustainable use and development of our natural resources.
The word PEU means not ony tradition and custom but also lifestyle and culture. MAORI means indigenous, being a native of the land
Peu Maori is the traditions and lifestyle of people indigenous to the Cook Islands. We respect and perpetuate the customs and culture of the indigenous people of the Cook Islands. Our visitors are immersed in our traditions and way of life and come to appreciate, understand and value our rich culture and history.
TURANGA here feres to an important status, and EVANGELIA means religion
We enjoy freedom of religion in the Cook Islands and so have deep respect for each other's beliefs. We encourage courtesy and respect amongst our visitors for the religious customs of Cook Islanders, while being careful that we don't impose our own religious beliefs on others, including our visitors while they are here.
MANA TIAKI PROGRAMMES
The Mana Tiaki Programme is the term used to describe the overarching programme that was developed as a community initiative for each of the islands in the Cook Islands.
Since the initial launch of Rarotonga’s programme called Vaka Pride, there has been three other islands that have adopted a Mana Tiaki programme. Te Vaka O Ru was established in 2016 on Aitutaki, Te Ieie O te Orau on the island of Mauke in 2018 and two years later Te Paa Tiare O Enuamanu was initiated in Atiu.
These programmes help to reward and acknowledge individuals and community groups that encapsulate the principles under the Mana Tiaki Value. These financial rewards are used by those nominated people to contribute towards their good work. The principles under Mana Tiaki capture the essence of those who are guardians and caretakers of our Environment, Culture and People.
This valuable programme is steered by a multi-agency committee who nominates individuals or groups within the community every four months that actively and continuously showcase the value of Mana Tiaki. The Mana Tiaki programmes have contributed to a variety of activities and projects over the years that have positively impacted on the community, the tourism industry and visitors to our little paradise.