Kids pitch in at marae planting
Te Puke High School students and staff were excited to be invited to join other local schools at Makahae Marae to help out with a community native tree planting.
Primary school pupils went out to the marae in the morning and around 250 high school students were transported out in the afternoon.
The account below is from Year 9 student, Jasrose-Kaur Mallhi.
“Students were given the chance to help protect and enhance the local environment and leave a community legacy to be enjoyed by generations to come,” says acting principal Simon McGillivray.
I am a year nine student at Te Puke High School and on August 5 Year Nine and Ten students visited Makahae Marae.
The reason behind this trip was to help the marae plant native trees and restore their grounds.
When we arrived we were given a short welcome and told of the history. The area to be restored was once a road to enter Te Puke until it was abandoned after the new one was built.
The people from Makahae Marae had talked to the government about planting native trees down the hillside and bringing the old road back to life as a walking trail.
Students were given a quick tutorial on planting trees. We all grabbed a tree and we started on our journey.
My friends and I decided to give everyone a job — one of us would collect rubbish, one of us was to bring the trees over and pass it to those who were planting. I can remember before we left on the bus everyone was happy to have time off school but when I was walking up and down the road everyone had a smile on their face and there was a lot of laugher.
It was fun to be outside and to help the environment. We had a little break after a long period of work and enjoyed thinking about all the planting we had done. In total just under 4000 trees needed to be planted and in the few hours we were there we had planted around 1000. Some of the trees that we planted were kauri, totara, flax, kowhai, kahikatea, manuka and ka¯nuka.
Finally, it was time to present our gift to the people of Makahae Marae, our waiata E Tuia I Te Ata.
The waiata was sung and it was time to head back to school. It was such a beautiful deed and I am thankful that I could be part of the occasion. It was an incredible adventure and a new experience for most. I think everyone should do something like this for their community because the feeling it leaves is unforgettable and difficult to explain.
— Jasrose-Kaur Mallhi
SOME of Te Puke High School students planting. Left to right: Poihipi Rameka, Narm Rawiri, Omega Clarke(obscured), Chance Fox, Noah Liddicoat, Caleb Clarke overseen by Whaea Te Whetu and Cathy Shaw.
STUDENTS being briefed by Dean Flavell before setting off to collect and plant native trees around Makahae Marae.