What happens when two experienced yoga teachers combine their passion for mindfulness through movement with a journey to strengthen Te Reo Māori skills? They dream up Te Reo Yoga Cards! These cards will be an excellent way for people to incorporate both Te Reo and a daily yoga practice into their lives. We chatted to Shirley and Jase, the team behind the project, to find out more:
Why do you think this campaign is important?
We are both really passionate about seeing Te Reo Māori and the positive impacts yoga has on our Hauora or wellbeing. In yoga we aim to move the body, quieten the mind and open the spirit, which in turn allows us to have greater relationships with others. Yoga and Hauora – there is no difference!
In 2016, only 15% of adult New Zealanders could speak basic Te Reo Māori. We’d like to contribute to the government’s goal of getting 1 million Kiwis confident and able to speak the language at a basic level. The more we normalise the use of the language, and see it used in everyday situations and places, like on a yoga mat, the more Te Reo Māori will have a chance to thrive.
What motivated you to reach out to your crowd?
This venture is for everyone… not just reo advocates or yoga practitioners. It’s for anyone interested in their wellbeing and Te Reo Māori. Te Reo Yoga Cards can be practiced at home, in the office, or at kura/school. Our aim is to have people practising te reo and yoga at their own pace, in their own time, and in any environment!
Pledge Me will allow us to spread the word on our kaupapa, to get people on our waka and contribute towards something that will leave a long-lasting legacy for all Kiwis. We want to make this product look and feel like a homegrown, Māori based product, that has the input of all who contribute to Te Reo Yoga Cards.
From Shirley’s work at Yoga With Me in creating the Yoga Deck, and Jase’s work incorporating Te Whare Tapa Whā into his M3 Mindfulness for Children programme and AWHI yoga studio, we knew there’d be the need to bring in subject matter experts. The Te Reo Yoga Cards will require pin point photography and design work for the physical cards themselves. Our stretch goal is to have our communities pledge $25,000 towards the development and production of the cards. This is a collaborative work, culminating in the mahi of various experts, so we wanted to make sure there was pūtea available to pay all of our valued contributors!
What do you have planned for the rest of the campaign – anything for us to look forward to?
We’re hosting a wānanga in mid-April to bring together our te reo and yoga experts. These kaiwhakahaere will help us develop the ‘kupu hou me ngā tohutohu’ or basic words and instructions for the most common yoga postures. Next step is photography and design to get the cards ready for production. There are many yoga postures, but we’ will focus on the most common ones or the “Greatest Hits”. All of our fan favourite poses will be on our Te Reo Yoga Cards.
Anything you would like to shout out to your crowd?
Te Reo Yoga Cards are a user friendly way to ease into our two worlds. We’re making it super simple, so even our tamariki could read them and give yoga and te reo a go. If you’re interested in the wellbeing of yourself, your tamariki and your kaumatua, then please show our campaign some aroha! ĀWHINA MAI, KOA! Please support us!