Waitangi Diving wānanga participants

The Drowning Prevention Auckland team were lucky enough to spend a week in Northland for a Waitangi Water Safety promotion, alongside Water Safety New Zealand this February. The week was built around manaakitanga and rangatiratanga with a focus on educating whānau to be safe in, on and around water.

During this week the team delivered their first diving safety wānanga in Northland. They engaged with local hapū and iwi organisations as well as Ngā Puhi iwi social services to help promote the wānanga. Overall, there was a fantastic response from whānau that they were interested in learning about good diving practice. A good number of participants took part in the three session wānanga.

Whānau responded interested

Theory session participants

Practical pool session participants

Open water dive participants

Following the wānanga the team delivered a dive workshop to 30 kaihoe (paddlers) preparing for the Waitangi celebration. Stories were shared about how divers get into difficulty and how risk can be reduced through educating whānau on having the correct gear, using buoyancy aids, knowing your ability and fitness and being familiar with the area and environments. 

In addition, the team ran a two-day dive safety stall at the Waitangi grounds alongside Water Safety New Zealand. These two days were filled with many quality interactions, engaging with just over 280 people. The outcomes were outstanding in terms of educating whānau and hearing their voices and stories as they participated in the wānanga and discussions.

This week was a great opportunity for whanaungatanga and kaitiakitanga. Thank you to Water Safety New Zealand for giving us this opportunity, we hope to be back next year. 


When I was young I was taught old styles not having gear. Since doing this course and having all the correct gear its reignited that desire for me to start diving again and to teach my own whānau properly.


Doing this programme open my eyes to having all the right gear especially having buoys to hold your kaimoana, have a rest on and to rescue someone.


I thought I knew a lot about diving but doing this programme I learnt so much. Not having all the right gear can be dangerous especially diving with shoes and not having fins.

Complete our FREE e-learning module: Water Safety for the Māori Community (Te Reo Māori).

Tikanga Marutau Wai Mō te Hapori Māori – E aro atu ana tēnei akoranga ki ngā ngohe wai i roto i te hapori Māori, pēnei mai i te waka ama, ruku kai moana, me te hī ika mā te kupenga.