Exciting times for Kaita¯ ia
I’M passionate about our community, our rangatahi and my family. I love to help our community in any way I can, and just get involved with what’s happening. I want to help make Kaita¯ ia a better place to live, work and play in.
I really do love Kaita¯ ia, because I was brought up here. I can proudly say that my most memorable moments would be the five times my wife had our children, and I love that we are raising them all here at home.
I’m a musician and entertainer, but it can be tough being in the public eye. Although it may not come across, whether I’m gigging or emceeing an event, I’m always nervous. To overcome it I act like I’m confident as. When I was younger I learnt to look past everyone’s heads and not worry about who was looking at me. It is weird, because if I stand there with just a mic I’m quite shy, but if I have my congos or guitar, I’m totally relaxed.
I’m really excited for the rebuild of one of Kaita¯ ia’s old unused buildings, and can’t wait to see it full of rangatahi excelling in what they want to achieve and simply having somewhere they can go to in town. The biggest challenge for me as a youth kaimahi is trying to access money to put things on for these kids.
The kids should have the freedom to decide what they want to do with the money, not it being decided for them. I see organisations spending money on stuff that youth don’t even want. It’s not easy if you want to keep the rangatahi engaged and provide them with a space. But without that funding, you have to go out there and hamu (ask). So yes, it is most challenging at times, but we work through it.
In terms of safety on our streets right now, I want to help bring the community back to the old-school days, where parents knew where their children were and children had respect for their elders. Ultimately, I want to see a safer community where it is safe to walk the streets without having to look over your shoulder.
If you get yourself involved with the community and the people of it, then it is important that you ‘walk your talk’ so they have faith in your word, and that you honour what you say you will do for them. I truly believe that’s what matters in a small town like ours.