The Whakapapa of Whāriki

December 21, 2023

Whāriki (noun): a woven mat.  

Whāriki is a metaphor for the weaving of whanaungatanga in business. Each of us represents a strand of harakeke, bringing our own individual strengths, kōrero, and mātauranga to the process. Together, we are interwoven as a whānau. Our kaupapa is to provide the platform that facilitates the sharing of experiences, collaboration, and forming of connections with one another.

Ko Wai Mātou - Our Background  

Whāriki began with a core group who saw a need and the value of pakihi Māori coming together to support each other. Each founder had personal networks where they knew successful business owners, corporate professionals, iwi leaders and social entrepreneurs, but there were few opportunities to come together to celebrate success and share stories with like-minded people.  Building on the simple, but universally powerful concept of whanaungatanga (relationships) as the driver, Whāriki was born.

Since then, our kaupapa has been to tautoko and uplift our pakihi Māori community by creating moments of connection and celebration through networking events, digital workshops, panel discussions and so much more.

The Whāriki Community Platform

Whāriki acts as a turangawaewae, a safe space for any Māori business, anywhere. This Community platform - designed with our whānau of members in mind - is just that. It is a digital space that allows our Whāriki whānau to connect and collaborate, share information and resources, ask for advice, message each other, and accelerate the growth of Māori businesses.

The role of the platform is to remove barriers to business growth by giving you access to the information and resources you need to help your pakihi thrive. It is a culturally safe environment for us to marry economic and entrepreneurial ambition with kaupapa Māori values as a collective.

What’s Inside?

If you’re looking to connect, learn and grow with other Māori business owners, professionals and entrepreneurs, you’ve come to the right place. Inside our community you can:

  • Learn best practices and share insights on how to best build, launch and scale Māori-owned and operated businesses.
  • Engage in conversations and read threads with other pakihi Māori owners and professionals.
  • Connect with our wider Whāriki networks across various regions in Aotearoa - find business owners, professionals and partners through our Circle member directory.
  • Access resources we have created, such as our masterclasses, toolkits, and templates - we invite you to share your own too.
  • Attend professional networking and educational business events by registering for upcoming hui in our calendar - you can also gain access to our digital event recaps.
  • Contribute by helping others building a valuable community for the Māori business ecosystem and economy.
  • Add your pakihi to the public facing business directory on our website to gain exposure to a wider audience, potential customers, and fellow entrepreneurs who are passionate about supporting pakihi Māori.

    Check out our Pakihi here.

The objective is for members to share their expertise with each other. It serves to foster opportunities for capability-building by enabling you to connect with fellow entrepreneurs, founders, professionals, and rangatahi. We know that when our community of members come together and support one another, we can grow and scale the Whāriki (woven mat) as a whānau.

The strength of our Community Platform lies in the engagement and active participation of individuals within it, and we encourage all members to contribute their knowledge and expertise to enhance the quality of Whāriki community and its contents.

How will the Whariki Community platform progress?

The Whāriki Community platform is driven by you (the Whāriki whānau)! And is therefore open to the direction this takes. If you have ideas for feature suggestions or new spaces in Circle, we are open to suggestions. Reach out to the team here.

2023 and Beyond

In 2023, award-winning, senior business executive, Trina Tamati joined as Manahautū to bring Whāriki into its next exciting stage.  

Our overarching mission is simple yet powerful. We are committed to developing the Māori economy by helping businesses lift their capability, expand their capacity and substantially increase their profitability. This will enable the growth needed to build employment opportunities for tangata whenua and improve outcomes for our people.

This year, a key focus is the launch and growth of this Community platform. Serving as the digital embodiment of the Whāriki metaphor, it is a space for you, our whānau of members.

Here, we invite you to bring your own strengths, kōrero, and mātauranga to the collaboration, sharing of experiences, and forming of connections with other members of the Whāriki whānau.

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