Ngai Tai were one of several providers within our collective (Te Ao Marama) that were successful in running a programme for obesity rangatahi.
Our programme was broken into two parts. The first was a horse programme which encouraged riders of all ages to hop on a horse. For those experienced riders they were encouraged to compete in Horse Sports which was run over a period of time and in different locations. There was an opportunity for new young riders to also ride in the horse sports events as well.
We supported our riders financially and physically by ensuring they were able to compete in the events and also went to support the events. Ngai Tai hosted the Opotiki event named after Peggy MacDonald. Peggy started the horse sports in Opotiki and many a cowboy has come across Peggy in their career.
While our programmes were run from Haparapara to Turangi, we were also visited by Te Ururoa Flavell and Marama Fox, at Torere. He was very impressed with our different approach to health and fitness and we intend to restart the horse events here in Torere with the support of the whanau and community. Te Ururoa spent many a holiday here and his first introduction to horses was here in Torere. He also geegeed up and hopped on a horse along with Marama and rode the obstacle event set up behind the marae.
An article appeared in the Opotiki News on 31 March reporting on our initiative “Mr Flavell said he really enjoyed himself and some of the kids showed real skills with the horses. He said it was a great way to encourage “Coastie” kids to be active.” Below are the team from Ruatoki who partnered with Ngai Tai in this Pou Hakinakina initiative ready to compete at Peggys day.