Community Scoop

Bringing Te Tiriti alive in our work

Janet Miller

Organisation Manager | Community Research

“Our change will be driven and always has been driven from the grassroots, and that is why community organisations modelling and bringing Te Tiriti alive in their work is such an important part of a flourishing Aotearoa.” Jen Margaret

Matariki was an exciting time for us here at Community Research this year. It was a time for gathering together our Community Research whānau and reflecting on our past. We have new kaitiaki and new staff and this influx of talent and new ideas invites us to reflect on our past and share with them the whakapapa of our organisation. We do this to acknowledge our origins and to pave the way for us to move forward with energy and awareness, as we head into the future.

An integral part of our organisational whakapapa is our committment to a Tiriti/Treaty relationships framework. We are fortunate in that this approach has been embedded at Community Research since we came into being in 2008. We operate a two house model of governance with a Tangata Tiriti caucus and a Tangata Whenua caucus that together govern our organisation. This governance model allows for different world views to be embedded in our organisational culture and directs the work that we do, the voices that we amplify through our webinars and the online resources that we share.

Our approach to Te Tiriti is based on collaboratively designed, Tangata Whenua, Community and Voluntary Sector specific work done in the early 2000s by the Community Sector Taskforce ( Our interpretation of the two house model is just one approach to applying Te Tiriti. With our new reinvigorated kaitiaki and new staff we will examine Te Tiriti and its application to our work with new eyes – the journey is an ever evolving one.

There are many other ways of incorporating Te Tiriti in our work and each community organisation needs to find its own path. We gain inspiration from the stories of other community organisations and the work of Treaty Educator Jen Margaret, among others.  To support others in their journey we have gathered together resources for those engaging with Te Tiriti and these are available to all.

We look forward to hosting Jen Margaret for another webinar later this year and continuing our Tiriti journey.


This blog has been contributed by a member of the ComVoices network. The views presented here are not necessarily those of ComVoices.

 ComVoices is a Wellington based network of national community and voluntary sector organisations. It was established so that sector organisations would have a more powerful voice at Government level and in the community.

 Click here for our website