June says the current state of the world and how it’s affecting our whānau made her weep with sadness.
“If we have harboured doubts about the efficacy of our service to our people, it comes home to roost when you receive a phone call like I did,” she says.
“A shaky elderly voice was wanting to thank our organisation for leaving a box of supplies. He then started crying and repeatedly apologised for being so emotional. He said, ‘I’ve never known such kindness. I’m 86 and our mokos are all in Australia. I worked for 50 years with the Māori Wardens – 16 years here in Rotorua’.”
When June asked the koro if he was alright, he responded that he was OK, and that his wife had gone to visit their other moko. He just wanted to ring to say how grateful they were to have support at this time.
“This, from a man who has probably never had to ask for help at any time in his life. I think of my parents and how astounded they’d be by the state of the world. I’m glad they’re not here to live through these troubled times."
“Kia ora rawa koutou mō o koutou manaaki me te awhi mō to tātou iwi, ngā mihi whakawhetae.”