E tūtaki ana ngā kapua o te rangi, kei runga, kei runga te Mangoroa e kōpae pū ana | The clouds in the sky close over, but above them spreads the milky way

New online resource for Kāi Tahu to support the revival of their customary birthing practices


A new website has sprung from the PhD research of Kelly Tikao, and has been created in collaboration with Kāi Tahu midwives, whānau, hākui, and tāua who wish to support the revival of our customary practices relating to Hākuitaka. This online resource is to connect Kāi Tahu whānau with their tīpuna knowledge and practices relating to pregnancy, birthing, as well as the much needed support tools for whānau who have lost babies through miscarriage or still birth. 

You will find information about oriori (birth chants) and you can listen to oriori that have recently been composed and some revived oriori from Kāi Tahu tīpuna.

The website also hosts a directory of Māori midwives and Māori artists living and practicing in Te Waipounamu who have an interest in: creation, conception, pregnancy, childbirth and hauora Māori. The directory is free and is optional.

The Mātauranga page is dedicated to providing links to kōrero, videos, articles that address kaupapa Māori/Mātauranga Māori pertaining to customary maternity practices primarily in Te Waipounamu but will also look at informative material in Te Ika a Maui. You can also learn more about the Māori Midwives ki Tahu.

Learn more about the people behind Hākui here. We are so grateful that Kelly Tikao gave her time to present at our recent PADA Māori Perinatal Mental Health Hui Ā-Ipurangi in November; Mō ngā uri ā muri ake nei (for the descendants to come) – Rejuvenating Ngāi Tahu Birthing Knowledge and Practices. We are delighted to share her thesis; Raro timu raro take – Ngai Tahu birthing traditions. (2020)







You can contact Kelly here.

Some feedback from Kelly’s presentation at our Hui Ā-Ipurangi:

“Kelly Tikao’s presentation was outstanding. Reconnecting to customary practices is so important for our whānau and Kelly’s humility and passion in this space was evident. She is an amazing presenter and I could listen to her all day!”

“Kelly Tikao was inspirational and this has increased my understanding about Ngai Tahu birthing knowledge.”

“Kelly’s presentation was a beautiful insight into a new way of working for me.”

Please note that this site is not affiliated with PADA, we are posting this to help share this incredible mahi with our members and supporters.