From NetHui: Digital Wings Rangatahi workshops
The story begins at the NetHui 2017 Māori Meetup in Auckland.
A group of Māori tech innovators shared their work and it caught the imagination of Digital Wings Programme Director, Di Daniels. She asked if we could get these inspirational leaders in front of groups of rangatahi to raise their aspirations for education and employment?
This created the Digital Wings Rangatahi workshops, and they moved online during COVID-19, also securing a grant of $5,000 from MSD to develop an innovation to assist their work delivery.
This is a great demonstration of a discussion at NetHui turning into action.
Who are Digital Wings, and what do they do?
Digital Wings are committed to a clean and thriving Aotearoa. They were established in 2017 to develop digital capability by distributing refurbished electronic equipment from business and government entities to community organisations that provide young people with educational and employment opportunities.
They encourage businesses to donate their equipment each time they upgrade so we can all work together to keep e-waste out of the landfill. Donors can nominate charities they already support as recipients of Digital Wings donations.
Back row, L-R:
- Sarah Lee, InternetNZ Councillor
- Janie Tito, ThankYou Payroll and Manu.Net
- Peter Lucas-Jones, Far North Radio, Te Hiku Media
- Dr Johnson Witehira, Johnson Witehira Indigenous Visual Artist
- Maru Nihoniho MNZM, the first Māori woman gamer and creator of Tākaro
- Jesse Armstrong, Vaka interactive
- Miriame Barbarich, IDIA (Indigenous Design & Innovation Aotearoa), Apōpō - (co-coordinated this event with Sarah)
- Hori Te Ariki Mataki, Ariki Creative
- Anthony Royal
Front row, L-R:
- Anna Marie Vos
- Nikora Ngaropo, Young Animators
- Keoni Kealoha Mahelona, Te Hiku Media
How did this come about?
After 2017’s NetHui, Di stayed in touch with as many from the session as possible, and worked with who had the time to give to this kaupapa.
Hiria Te Rangi, of Whare Hauora, spoke to rangatahi in Wellington’s Talent Rise and to Spark’s Tech Roadshow in Palmerston North. Digital Wings partnered with Te Pūtahitanga Trust’s Whānau Ora programme and took Hori Mataki’s team at Ariki Creative in Christchurch to deliver four awesome workshops in Dunedin and Gore.
These were a great success, but the first challenge emerged when schedule conflicts arose, with many of the experts who wanted to be involved found it hard to put so much time aside for the workshops in their already demanding schedules.
The challenge presented during COVID-19 added to this, and an idea to address both problems was found: translating the workshop content into online resources—YouTube, TikTok and platforms—that young people would use to see it.
After many phone calls, texts, Facebook groups, Google docs and Zoom meetings, the team made progress. Showing real people sharing their stories of how they got into tech careers was paramount, with emphasis on showing women and young people in tech, Māori in tech and to make tech sound fun and look creative and exciting.
The team created a dozen video clips covering graphic and logo design, tech career paths and work experience, as well as Introductions to coding and animation. They have been welcomed by Digital Wings charities and community providers working with rangatahi engagement into education and employment.
The workshop concept came out of a session held during NetHui in 2017 and demonstrates that NetHui events can seed ideas leading to action—like enhancing digital inclusion in underserved communities.
We hope to see more projects evolve from NetHui 2020, which takes place on the 13th and 14th October 2020, and would love to see you there!
Digital Wings would like to give a huge thanks to Heeni Tito, Eli Taueki, Hiria Te Rangi, Nikora Ngaropo, Max Tiweka, Ariki Creative, and MSD.