Tagata Pasifika The Pacific voice on New Zealand television since 1987

Rotorua youth MP creating a safe space for Pasifika and Māori youth to voice concerns.

Public Interest Journalism funded through NZ On Air
Youth advocate Te Horowai Mapapalangi. Photo: Provided
Youth advocate Te Horowai Mapapalangi. Photo: Provided
Waimanea Nuri | Te Rito Journalism Cadet

A youth advocate selected as part of the 2022 intake for the New Zealand Youth Parliament is committed to providing support for his Māori and Pasifika communities in Rotorua.

Te Horowai Mapapalangi of Tongan descent and hails from Te Arawa, is optimistic for the future and says it is time for tangata whenua and tagata Pasifika to voice their concerns and create a safe space for young Māori and Pasifika people.

The 18 year old student is currently studying commerce, arts, economics, politics and international relations at the University of Auckland.

One of the areas of concern for Te Horowai is the lack of support for Māori and Pasifika youth and plans to help those by applying all his knowledge in his future endeavours.

“We have been suffering for a long time and only we know what’s good for us. If the government agencies had listened to our concerns, everything would be different.”

He believes the difficulties stem from within government agencies and as a result can impact Māori and Pasifika who are struggling with mental health.

“By Māori for Māori initiatives are the best way for Māori to thrive and so forth with Pasifika communities. The potential in these initiatives give support mentally and physically, it is as easy as listening to those people in need. If these communities were involved in the decision making for their own initiatives and financial support, tangata whenua and tagata Pasifika would succeed in many ways,” says Te Horowai.

Te Horowai says we need to voice our concerns and stand by our values. With his culture and customs, he strives for a better future.

“Initiatives that are purposely made for Māori and Pasifika by Māori and Pasifika are built for success”.

Te Horowai is the Youth MP representing National MP for Rotorua Todd McClay. The 10th NZ Youth Parliament runs from 1 March to 31st August. A special sitting in Parliament chambers will be held on 19th & 20th July.

You Might Be Interested In