A cultural network for the Pacific Continent

“Te Moana Nui a Hiva is a family. Our many islands are connected by our one Pacific Ocean, as her tide laps at each of our shores.” 

We are sea people, and Moana is our mother. She has nurtured each of us as a loving parent: providing our first breath, livelihood and everything we needed to prosper. She is alive, she gave us life, and we belong to her. With belonging to her comes rights and responsibilities. Her mana is our mana. Her mauri is our mauri.

Today, she speaks to us of her deep pain. Her children stolen by overfishing, poisoned by plastic, or blocked from their ancient migration paths. The hurt in her belly from seafloor dredging. Her life-sustaining coral forests, dying. She struggles to breathe in a warming, acidifying and polluted environment”.

© naturepl.com / Tony Wu / WWF

Our Goals


  • Inspire all people to commit to action for the protection and restoration of our Pacific Continent for future generations.

  • Ensure that blue economies are developed in a sustainable way that acknowledges our rights as traditional guardians and enables our traditional practices to continue.

  • Reduce marine pollution utilising social change strategies, the reinvigoration of traditional practices, and adopting a ridges-to reefs approach.

  • Build resilience to climate change impacts through traditional knowledge and nature-based solutions.

  • Influence local, national and international activities to achieve our established goals.

© Te Moana Nui a Hiva

Recently, we Pacific representatives, came together to hui for our Moana at ‘Taiātea: an ocean gathering’. Hosted by Ngāti Kuri, we sought to connect, share, learn and plan. There, we agreed the significance of our relationship with and intimate knowledge of our Moana will no longer be dulled by letting others speak on our behalf. And we felt the overwhelming urgency of the situation before us, but saw the potential in working together, embracing shared aspirations, recognising the value of traditional knowledge and the importance of elevating indigenous leadership.

We gathered again in Tahiti as “Island Voices’ to refine our collective vision and mission. We formalised our network, nominated Ngāti Kuri to lead and facilitate our mahi, and we set up a working group. From this, Te Moana Nui a Hiva was born.

We feel the overwhelming urgency of the situation before us. However, we see the potential in working together, embracing shared aspirations, prioritising the value of traditional knowledge and elevating indigenous leadership.

We are a family, bound by our love for and connection to our Moana. We have the power and the knowledge to bring about the urgent changes required to start the healing process for our ocean mother.

© Taiatea

Our Values


  • We come from the ocean, she is our ancestor. Our decisions and actions are based on this knowledge.

  • We value historical knowledge handed down by our ancestors. We will maintain, revitalise and pass on these traditional knowledge systems to transform the current state of our ocean.

  • We raise our collective voices and take joint responsibility for the ocean.

  • We work with and for our future generations to maintain access to traditional knowledge as well as new technologies.

  • We will partner with all who share and recognise our values and aspirations. Together, we will build unity and purpose.

  • We respect the autonomy of each island to lead its own action and speak for themselves.
© Pexels

Our friends


We couldn’t do this alone. Taiātea, Island Voices and Te Moana Nui A Hiva are supported by grants, friends and partners including UNESCO, Pew Charitable Trust, Tāmaki Paenga Hira (Auckland War Memorial Museum) and WWF-New Zealand. Together, we are working to ensure Te Moana Nui a Hiva unites Pacific indigenous voices for a healthy and resilient Moana. 

Together, our many islands can unite with the great tide of aroha, to bring action for our Moana.


Logos of Te Moana Nui a Hiva friends