Mana Pounamu Young Achievers' Award

He tāoka, he koha, he kura pounamu


The Mana Pounamu Young Achievers’ Awards was brought about through the vision of the late Tāua, Alva Kapa, a local Kāi Tahu educator. It was named as such because it was first held in the Year of Mana Pounamu (2001) and is a Kāi Tahu initiative supported by Kā Papatipu Rūnaka ki Arai-Te-Uru.

The awards ceremony is an opportunity to celebrate the achievement of rakatahi Māori in secondary schools across Otago. Please note that the underlying objectives of these awards are to:

  • Celebrate the success and achievement of rakatahi Māori
  • Encourage rakatahi to participate in further tertiary study
  • Identify leadership potential
  • Provide positive role models to rakatahi Māori
  • Create networking opportunities
  • Provide and distribute information relating to study, career and scholarships.


Various organisations, institutions, groups and members of our community have been involved in the Mana Pounamu Awards since its inception. In particular, we would like to acknowledge ongoing support from:

  • Te Rūnanga o Ngāi Tahu
  • Kā Papatipu Rūnaka ki Arai-Te-Uru (Ōtākou, Puketeraki & Moeraki)
  • Otago Polytechnic (these scholarships are awarded to Year 12 & 13 Mana Pounamu winners – senior recipients only who are in their final year
  • The University of Otago
  • The Ministry of Education
  • The Otago Daily Times (since 2011)
  • Tokona te Raki

Who can be nominated for Mana Ponamu?

From each Otago secondary school, one junior (Yrs 9-11) AND one senior (Yrs 12-13) recipient can be nominated based on a broad range of achievements, which may include one OR many of the following areas :

  • Cultural
  • Leadership
  • Academic
  • Community
  • Sporting 


Key Dates

School recipients Due: Friday, 30th September 2022, 12noon.

Mana Pounamu Awards Ceremony: Friday, 28th October 2022, 5.15pm

Venue: University of Otago, College of Education Auditorium, 145 Union Street East University of Otago


What documentation is needed?

The following information must be provided when filling in the online application form by Friday, 30th September 2022, 12noon.

  1. Recipient’s curriculum vitae
  2. School’s testimonial in support of the recipient
  3. Whānau endorsement
  4. Photo of the recipient
  5. A signed Media Consent form

Incomplete, late or paper applications WILL NOT be accepted.

Useful Links

Example Profile 2021



Mana Pounamu Process of Nomination


Form cycle 2023