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Vananga (vaa-na-nga)

means to converse or discuss and during this process,
knowledge exchange and learning happens. 

Vananga is the real essence of what we do, connecting generations to the knowledge of our ancestors through our cultural practices. This includes; vaka making, carving implements and functional items, lashing, weaving, genealogy, storytelling, history and language.

Under Papa Mikes lead, the vananga is a thriving hub of discussion and activity. 

One way we have done this is to encourage our community, especially our children, to come and learn our heritage arts of carving, printing and storytelling. 


We kindly request that all groups plan their visit to our Vananga. We call these our 'cultural experiences' and arrange an activity such as pareu printing or carving or a sit down korero (discussion) with Papa Mike.


(*Groups are 9 or more people. Check out our calendar to book your 'Group Cultural Experience' with us.)


Our learning efforts are not done for profit. 
Any fees charged for vananga activities go directly into everything we need to run the curriculum,

program or cultural experience session. 


Any donations are very much appreciated.

We use donations to help us plan, develop, document,

purchase resources and communicate program offers to the local and global community.

When you are in our vananga, you are here to learn.
Everyone gets treated the same. The focus is on the exchange and connection.

Papa Mike and Mama Awhitia inspire this framework of sharing knowledge with a desire to see the culture living, being talked about, being practiced and being honoured.

If you are interested to hear more or learn how you can contribute

or participate, please contact us.


We encourage schools to bring their students to us to learn about our Cook Islands culture, language and art.


We love the opportunity to work with children incorporating functional art works, storytelling and history to engage them and teach them something new and interesting about the Cook Islands.

Contact us if you would like to arrange a school visit.

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