Because Te Tai-awa was established as a response to the Treaty of Waitangi, it has always been central to our kaupapa. It took us some time to determine that because we have accountabilities to the Crown through our funding, we are not on the hapu side of the relationship. Because of tikanga, as well as the Treaty, we wanted robust relationships with mana whenua so became involved with Ngati Tamaoho, part of the Waiohua confederation. Their marae at Mangatangi has been particularly supportive. We use their Treaty interpretation in guiding our work:
We have also had a long relationship with the Auckland WEA, which established the Treaty Resource Centre. Te Tai-awa uses the model developed by Treaty Resource Centre which incorporates equity for Maori, competencies in working cross-culturally and renormalising te reo me ona tikanga as steps toward being able to achieve the relationship anticipated by those signing Te Tiriti.
AWEA have asked us to be kaitiaki of their resources and to carry on delivery of their Treaty work, which is mainly providing workshops and consultancy for a variety of organisations, in different sectors. Tai-awa employs all the facilitators who were working for AWEA, and the transition has been so smooth that organisations only notice that the host organisation has changed when they see the name on an invoice.