Karney | Aramoho, Manawatū-Whanganui
“There’s so many things that I’m grateful for. Obviously the birth of all my children. I’ve got four children, but one in particular that really stands out is my wife and I, we had lost a baby, and then after that, we got pregnant pretty close after that, and when our baby boy was born, on the 5th of December, same day as my brother, his name’s Taonga.
I was able to give his first breath. I blew into his nose, because he wasn’t breathing when he was born. I blew into his face, and to see his life start from that breath was something I’m really, really grateful for, and it’s something that I’ll always remember. Special moment. So we named him Taonga. He’s our special gift, which came after we obviously lost and went through some challenging times losing a bubba. But I’m really, really grateful for that. I’m grateful for all our children, but it was that little moment at the hospital, birthing our baby boy and blowing into his face, and giving him his first breath. At that time, I was younger and what it really taught me is that life is precious and, and it’s special to be able to share these moments with people you love, and to bring a person into this world. Life is too short, and moments like this you need to cherish, when you bring a new life into the world, there’s nothing greater. One of the biggest learnings in life for me is that life is precious. In that particular moment seeing my baby boy take his first breath, I realised that every moment and opportunity that I have as a dad, to share everything I possibly can to help him and my family grow, and share those special moments together, is one of the biggest learnings I have. Time is really, really important, and to spend that time with those that I love and, and treasure, my taonga, my kids, is very important to me.
I come from a little town which I say is as close as you can get to the centre of the universe, nestled nicely under our koro, Mt Ruapehu, in a little town called Raetihi. It’s where I was born and grew up. I also spent time growing up in Australia in Melbourne before eventually moving to Whanganui where I now live with my family.
I currently work at the Whanganui District Health Board, Kaitakitaki Māori Workforce Development. One of the key and important parts of that mahi is around trying to help grow the Māori health workforce, both in capability and capacity across our district of the Whanganui, Ruapehu and Rangitikei area. A really awesome and rewarding career. It’s something that I enjoy waking up daily to head off to work, which I don’t really consider work. I enjoy working in this space, and I really, really enjoy working with rangatahi, outside of work. That’s probably my place of joy, is giving back to young people. I like to share my passion and love that I have for basketball, sports, but in particular basketball. My wife and I have a part of this awesome club called Te Kāhui that allows us to spend time not only with our kids, but with their mates, our nephews, nieces, and other kids around the community, and share the love and passion that we have.”