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Thanks so much! - Chica Jo and Paul

  • Writer's pictureChica Jo


Talk about a taniwha!  Thanks to D.O.C.-Te papa Atawhai Ranger, Trudi Ngawhare, Tairawhiti Enviroschools with DOC in Gisborne, and lots of school children we have surpassed our ultimate goal of a 100 metre long tuna!!!

Tairawhiti tuna at full length in the DOC carpark in Gisborne

Tairawhiti Enviroschools with Department of Conservation Gisborne hosted Velvet the travelling tuna in August 2011 inspiring schools to create their tapestry to add to Velvet. Schools readily engaged with the project, and the community responded positively about caring for our water ways and our precious taonga “the Longfin eel”.

TKKM o Tapere nui a Whatonga from Rangitukia, East Coast have added their 'voice' to the tuna

Now in April 2012 the Tairawhiti section of the tapestry all sewn together is ready to join the travelling tuna, aiming to catch up when it arrives in Waikato. The Tairawhiti section includes 11 different schools and early childhood centres from the Gisborne and East Coast area, adding 22metres to the tapestry.

“Its taken sometime to gather up the tapestries and a few little interuptions, but you can’t rush art” jokes DOC Community Relations Ranger Trudi Ngawhare “Tairawhiti are delighted they can be represented on the national tuna, voicing our support for protecting our native freshwater taonga”

Te Kura o Whatatutu on the rural outskirts of Gisborne, their tuna all good to go!

Te Tuna Wahine and everyone involved in Velvet says a big “Thank YOU!” to these folks for being the ones to make Velvet surpass her 100 metre goal.  Beehive, here we come……get ready for one special taonga!   We can’t wait to meet you all in Wellington in March 2013 to see her hanging at Te Papa and carried around the Beehive!!!  Awesome.

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