Sunday Star-Times

Education for a wha¯nau


Alvina Edwards has studied alongside all four of her children at university. Support from their iwi, both Nga¯i Tahu and Tainui, has been fundamenta­l to her family’s success, she says.

‘‘All of my children have been in tertiary study. They get some really substantia­l grants from Tainui.’’

At 56, Edwards is about to submit her PhD on indigenous identity, the culminatio­n of a decade of study, during which she has completed two degrees and a master’s. She also works at Waikato University mentoring Ma¯ori students, tutoring and sessional assistant. ‘‘This house has been a hub of study.’’

Both tribes had a strong focus on youth, providing training opportunit­ies and resources to support their young people from birth, she said. ‘‘The resources right across the board are incredible, and it’s our money. It’s making up for all the decades, all the economic failings, when educationa­l support wasn’t there.’’

– Catherine Groenestei­n

 ??  ?? Alvina Edwards got an education thanks to Treaty money.
Alvina Edwards got an education thanks to Treaty money.

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