Michelle Waireti Maria Roestenburg
As a Maori academic I left paid employment as a social worker and facilitator five and a half years ago to gain a university degree and begin to make a different kind of difference in our society, for those who struggle to cope with the very worst aspects society has to offer. As a Kaiwhakatinana to Ti Hauora o Te Aroha a traditional Maori spiritual healing clinic I have collaborated with others in a holistic manner to still, soothe and heal the spirit. Such healing enables people to reconnect with and then engage the world from a unique and powerful place within, and also beyond them. I have been working voluntarily in this capacity for over eight years.
As a mother and nana to four mokopuna, it is my hope that by attaining academic skills and qualifications I can work with others to unveil and therefore enable the dismantling of the ideological and actual mechanisms involved in the commodification and de-dignification of humanity. Blending academic and indigenous expertise enables me to be in the unique position of commenting and assisting the reconnection of all peoples to our inherent and potent indigenous natures. Natures that seek to prioritise and maintain care and passionate reciprocity as all are recognized as kin. Mid-wifing with others a transformation of human society at both the structural and personal levels that ushers in an era of human consciousness and organization that privileges and perpetuates life for all in the human and natural worlds.