Pohe Awatea Stephens is 24 years old with tribal connections to Waikato-Tainui, Ngāti Maniapoto, Ngāti Rārua, Ngāti Toarangatira, Ngāti Raukawa, Ngāiterangi, Ngāti Porou,
His passions include Te Ao Maaori, Te Reo Maaori, Tainui History and Tainui dialect, Photography, Graphic Design, Waka Ama, Kapa Haka & Te Taiao Māori.
He recently graduated from Te Whare Waananga o Waikato (University of Waikato) with a Graduate Diploma in Teaching (Secondary) and holds a Bachelor of Arts in Te Reo Maaori / Tikanga Māori also from Te Whare Waananga o Waikato. He is currently completing a Bachelor of Māori Performing Arts through Te Whare Waananga o Awanuiārangi.
Pohe Awatea is employed at Te Waananga o Aotearoa, Kirikiriroa as a Kaiako tutoring the Level 4 Certificate in Te Puutaketanga o te Reo Maaori and focuses his students on developing written and verbal language skills with a special emphasis on koorero (speaking the language). HIs passion is to retain the Maori language for our tamariki, rangatahi and future generations and fully support Te Kohanga Reo (Pre School Maaori Language Nests), Kura Kaupapa Maaori (Total Immersion Maaori Language Primary Schools), Wharekura (Total Immersion Maaori Language Secondary / High Schools) and Tertiary Institutions as vehicles to continued learning.He also acknowledges Tainuitanga and service to the Kingitanga are integral to this kaupapa and honour my Kuia, Kaumatua, marae, hapu and iwi for their support, guidance and commitment.
Ko tooku mana i takea mai i a Tainui. Ko Hoturoa te tangata, ko Raarua te tuupuna ka moe ai a Tuupaahau i Kaawhia; taka mai raa ko Tuurangaapeke ka riro kei Te Tauihu o te Waka a Maaui, ko Ngaati Raarua te ure tārewa; honoa mai raa ko Ngaa Paapaka o Rangataua he paruparu ngaa kai, he taniwha ngaa taangata, ko Ngaaiterangi te iwi ko ngaa taha ki tooku matua teenei te puea ake nei.
Hoki kau noa mai ki te riu tapu nui o ngā wai a Taikehu ko Maniapoto, ratou ko Kinohaku, ko Urunumia, ko Paretekawa, ko Waiora, ko Mahuta ko ngaa mana koroheke o te waka o Tainui, whanatuu atu raa ki Te Tairaawhiti ko Ngaati Porou nui tonu, ko ngaa taha ki tooku whaea ko Waikato te uukaipoo; hiinei te kohi ake i ngaa taurahere whakapapa kei roto i ahau anoo kia maarama ko wai kee ahau; paimaarire.