Te Rerenga Manu: Unleash the Entrepreneurial Pacific Spirit

Press Release: Te Rerenga Manu
Te Rerenga Manu: unleash the entrepreneurial pacific spirit

The first ever Te Rerenga Manu fono (conference) will take place next week on 31 August and 1 September at the Papatoetoe Seventh Day Adventist Church (PAPSDA) Campus.

The two-day fono brings together social, business, health and educational innovators who will lead the way in unleashing the entrepreneurial pacific spirit.

Te Rerenga Manu is being delivered by the Emerging Pasifika Leaders Steering Group, a group funded by The Southern Initiative of Auckland Council.

“Pasifika people are economically and socially being left behind. The status quo isn’t working and drastic change needs to occur to improve our economic and social outcomes,” says Dickie Humphries, Conference Convenor and a member of the Emerging Pasifika Leaders Steering Group.

“Te Rerenga Manu refers to the freedom and flight of the bird (manu). We all have talents, knowledge and gifts that when nurtured, will unleash the potential of people in South Auckland,” says Dickie.

“The fono is a rally call to people who want to be part of the economic and social change needed for Pasifika people in the region to reach full flight.”

Te Rerenga Manu will be a unique fono experience with pacific drama and music featured throughout to provoke discussion as well as to complement the insights and stories of business, health, social and education leaders such as successful entrepreneur and businessman Ulumoatootua (Ulu) Aiono.

“I’m excited to share my journey in business at Te Rerenga Manu. I have experienced life as a migrant to New Zealand and understand first-hand how Pasifika people can significantly lift their economic and social outcomes if can they adopt an entrepreneurial spirit and work extremely hard to achieve their goals,” says Aiono, an Officer of the New Zealand Order of Merit for services to business.

Aiono headlines an impressive line-up of speakers and panellists which includes Raveen Jaduram, CEO of Watercare, Judy Matai’a, CEO of Anglican Trust for Women and Children, Ranjna Patel Director of East Tamaki Healthcare and Nirvana Health Group and John Belford-Lelaulu, a young South Auckland architect.

Te Rerenga Manu will also include keynote speeches from central government politicians Hon. Minister of Pacific Peoples, Alfred Ngaro and Green Party MP Marama Davidson.

Marama Davidson will address the fono on day one about the ‘Impact of South Auckland on the Nation’ and will be followed by Alfred Ngaro on day two to speak about ‘South Auckland, the Face of the Future’.


About Ulu Aiono:

Aiono founded COGITA in 1983, a multi-million dollar software technology company that specialised in resource planning software for blue-chip manufacturing and distribution companies. It was eventually sold in 2012 to Epicor, a global software company. Today he applies his business nous and experience to serving on several boards including the RiseUp Trust Partnership School, Alliance Community Initiatives Trust and Manukau Institute of Technology.

About the Southern Initiative of Auckland Council:

The Southern Initiative (TSI) champions, stimulates and enables social and community innovation in South Auckland. It is one of two major place-based regeneration programmes established in the Auckland Plan, alongside the city centre programme. It covers the local board areas of Māngere-Ōtāhuhu, Ōtara-Papatoetoe, Manurewa and Papakura. With its unique model of enabling change, TSI is attracting a high level of interest and investment from central government, community, business and philanthropy groups.

It has become Auckland's go-to community and social innovation centre, developing a practice that empowers the community to thrive. TSI has sharpened its attention to concentrate its limited resources on strategic projects and initiatives, selected because we know they can produce high-quality, high-impact results and effect deep change – our focus areas. These are:

• Employment and skills

• Whānau and families

• Entrepreneurship and enterprise

Te Terenga Manu Conference website