Tōu Ake Mana

The Tōu Ake Mana Framework is a set of practice orientations identified in the Pathways to Resilience and Youth Transitions Research (Massey University) that lead to better outcomes when working with vulnerable rangatahi Māori.

Kei roto i a koe tōu ake mana - Within each of us lies the seed of potential

The whakatauki used for Tōu Ake Mana speaks to potential that lies within everyone. It encourages kaimahi to continue to see the value and mana of the rangatahi they work with as well as your own uniqueness.

Consider your unique seed of potential. How do you harness that? What can you do to nurture it?



Te Ao Māori is based on relationships and the complementary roles that are evident in Māori society. We often talk about how roles do not exist without a companion role. Tōu Ake Mana highlights five key elements and the complementary roles and relationships that can help guide engagement with rangatahi Māori.

The five key elements are:

  • Mana Māori – our relationship with Mātauranga Māori, Tikanga Māori and Te Ao Māori.
  • Mana Atua – our ancestral and cultural connections that lead to a sense of belonging.
  • Mana Taiao – our access to cultural, natural and environmental settings.
  • Mana Tangata – our relational approach with others to create transformational opportunities.
  • Mana Motuhake – our ability to promote self-determining aspirations.

The koru on the right-hand side of the tohu represents Mana Māori. It encourages kaimahi to work towards developing a solid foundation guided by Mātauranga Māori and Tikanga Māori. The direction of the koru represents continual growth.

The top of the triangle is Mana Atua. It provides guidance and assists kaimahi to utilise their history, experiences and connections to ngā Atua Māori. It considers the role of whakapapa, cultural support for promoting positive behaviour.

The bottom left of the triangle is Mana Taiao: the different environments we engage in. Mana Taiao is also represented visually by the water-like symbol that connects to Mana Tangata and our particular relationship with water.

Mana Tangata is the right-hand point of the triangle. Mana Tangata is also representative of the human factor within the framework. Mana Tangata is also recognised on the right-hand side as a symbol of utilising the knowledge of the past to assist in moving forward.

Mana Motuhake is the koru on the left-hand side of the tohu. This is our aspirations and goals. Again, the direction of the koru depicts progression and momentum.

The middle of the triangle is a niho taniwha. Inside this niho taniwha is a larger triangle that represents the kaimahi. The raranga patterns show relationships can be varied.

Tōu Ake Mana Flip Cards

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Tōu Ake Mana Poster

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Tōu Ake Mana Postcard

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