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Papawhakaritorito Charitable Trust was set up in 2021 with a founding purpose to undertake kaupapa Māori; research, education and development in relation to Māori food sovereignty, Hua Parakore and tino rangatiratanga activities. Our love is to storytell, share our learnings and build critical Indigenous and allied food communities across the planet.

Founding Trustees Dr Jessica Hutchings (Ngāi Tahu, Ngāti Huirapa, Gujarati) and Associate Professor Jo Smith (Waitaha, Kāti Māmoe, Kāi Tahu) are passionate about seeding and growing Māori food sovereignty and tino rangatiratanga through kaupapa Māori and Indigenous pathways. Previous collaborative work includes the publication of Te Mahi Oneone Hua Parakore: A Māori Soil Sovereignty and Wellbeing Handbook (2020: Freerange Press) and the project Storying Kaitiakitanga. Jessica and Jo are currently co-leading a three year project called Kai Atua: Food for Hope and Wellbeing.

The Papawhakaritorito Trust acknowledges the support of the Todd Foundation in our mahi and supporting kaupapa Māori. We also deeply value our partnerships with Te Waka Kai Ora (National Māori Organics Authority) and Aatea Solutions.

Dr. Jessica Hutchings  

 Dr Jessica Hutchings (Ngāi Tahu, Ngāti Huirapa, Gujarati) is nationally and internationally recognised as a leader in Indigenous food systems and Māori food and soil sovereignty. Jessica is also a widely published author, including recent books, Te Mahi Oneone Hua Parakore: A Māori Soil Sovereignty and Wellbeing Handbook (Freerange Press 2020),  Te Mahi Māra Hua Parakore: A Māori Food Sovereignty Handbook (Te Tākupu, 2015). Dr Hutchings has been working at the crossroads of Indigenous knowledge, whānau and environmental wellbeing for the last three decades and has been a long serving member of Te Waka Kai Ora (National Māori Organics Authority) for almost 2 decades. She is also a Hua Parakore whānau food farmer and has been growing food and nurturing soil for over three decades. In addition to small scale food growing and research she also holds a range of governance and leadership roles in the science sector, including as a member on the MBIE Science Board, the founding Chair of the Rauika Māngai (2018-2021),  the Resilience to Nature's Challenge National Science Challenge and is the Co-Chair of the Pūhoro Charitable Trust.

For further information see jessicahutchings.org.nz

Jo Smith  

 Associate Professor Jo Smith (Waitaha, Kāti Māmoe, Kāi Tahu) is a researcher, teacher and writer who has spent more than two decades exploring the role of Indigenous media, art and popular culture in shaping narratives of identity, community and belonging. She has written articles on fine art, photography, television and film and is the author of the first book on Indigenous media organisation, Māori Television: the first ten years (2016). More recently Jo has contributed to Kaupapa Māori projects to do with decolonisation and the media, Māori agribusinesses, soil health and Māori food systems. Jo grew up eating healthy kai grown by her parents and is now reconnecting with māra kai practices at Papawhakaritorito where she grows the seedlings for the garden beds and works with the soil to enhance the microbial life beneath our feet.

Pounamu Skelton   

 Pounamu Skelton is an inspirational educator who creates programmes that reconnect whānau back to their magnificence and heal past traumas. Her work is based on the belief that everyone has the potential for greatness, and she strives to create learning environments that nurture this potential. Pounamu has experienced her own share of adversity, which has given her a deep understanding of the healing power of education. She is passionate about helping others find their voice and reclaim their power.


Drawing on her own journey of healing and growth, Pounamu creates programmes that are both transformational and inspiring. With a focus on empowering whānau (families), her work has reached people all around the world.




What is Papawhakaritorito?

Papawhakaritorito is the name of the whānau food farm that Jessica and Jo live on. The small scale Hua Parakore food farm nourishes soil, food and whānau and provides an opportunity to live Indigenous food and soil sovereignty through the Hua Parakore principles.

The name was given in 2007 by the late Dr Huirangi Waikerepuru a Māori language activist and trade unionist of Taranaki and Ngāpuhi whakapapa. Papawhakaritorito refers to the unfurling, a coming to know, a regenerative space and the place where the heart of the flax bush sings. It is a metaphor for whānau and collective wellbeing through holding fast to kaupapa Māori and ways of being on the land in Indigenous ways through living Indigenous food and soil sovereignty in our everyday.