New Zealand team celebrates Te Wiki o Te Reo Māori

This year, the Mobil Oil New Zealand team participated in several activities as part of Te Wiki o Te Reo Māori – Māori Language Week.

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New Zealand team celebrates Te Wiki o Te Reo Māori
This year, the Mobil Oil New Zealand team participated in several activities as part of Te Wiki o Te Reo Māori – Māori Language Week.

Māori Language week has been celebrated each year since 1975 and this year began with Māori Language Day on September 14, which commemorates the presentation of the 1972 Māori language petition to Parliament.

The week-long celebration and promotion of Māori includes many initiatives aimed at revitalising the Māori language. 

Mobil Oil New Zealand Lead Country Manager, Andrew McNaught said this year, more than one million New Zealanders joined Te Wā Tuku Reo Māori on Monday, making it the largest, single celebration of Te Reo Māori in history. 

As part of this nationwide event, the Mobil team held their own virtual Māori Language Quiz, while Māori subtitles were also added to the Mobil Fuels TV advertisement shown nightly during 1 News Sport.

“I’d like to thank everyone who took part in our Māori Language Te Wā Tuku Reo Māori on Rāhina (Monday).

“Never before have so many people celebrated our taonga language together at the same time, and everyone who participated should be whakahī (proud) of their role in te whakarauoratanga o te reo Māori (the revitalisation of the Māori language),” he said.

Mobil’s relationship with Te Reo Māori goes back over 30 years.

In the 1980s, Mobil donated the Mobil Oil Te Reo Excellence Trophy taonga, awarded to the winner of 'Te Kairangi o Te Reo' at Te Matatini, the national Māori performing arts festival. This taonga is still awarded today.

Mobil also sponsored the pivotal exhibition Te Māori, which opened at the Met in New York in September 1984. This exhibition toured museums in the USA and New Zealand over three years and revolutionised the way taonga Māori were treated as living cultural embodiments of tīpuna Māori.

Last year Mobil introduced a Te Reo Māori greeting on its Pay-at-Pump systems, welcoming customers to Mobil with “Kia ora, Nau mai ki Mobil / Welcome to Mobil”.

“One of the most impactful ways to support te whakarauoratanga o te reo Māori is to normalise the use of Te Reo Māori,” said Andrew.

“By welcoming all our Pay-at-Pump customers in Te Reo Māori, and using similar messaging in our Mobil Smiles communications, we are helping to promote our precious taonga.”

Last year, a group of Mobil personnel participated in the National Certificate in Māori Management. The Skills Active programme covered a range of skills and knowledge to help participants become more conversant in Te Reo Māori, culminating in a weekend cultural immersion experience at the Takapūwāhia marae (sacred meeting place) within the rohe (borders) of the Ngāti Toa Rangatira iwi in November.

 “Mobil embraces diversity and is committed to engaging with the communities in which we operate. As part of this, it’s paramount that our New Zealand team improve our understanding of Te Reo (Māori language) and tikanga Māori (Maori culture),” said Andrew.

“Members of our senior leadership team, terminal managers, and many other people within our business, regularly engage with Iwi and hapū groups on many different facets of our operations, and it is of the utmost importance that we can engage competently and empathetically.

“By better understanding our country, our customers and our communities, we can not only learn from them, we can also ensure that our products, services and engagement approaches are meeting their needs.”
During 2019, a group of Mobil personnel participated in the National Certificate in Māori Management. The Skills Active programme covered a range of skills and knowledge to help participants become more conversant in Te Reo Māori.