A global citizen

The following kōrero (story) was written by a year 10 Mount College student, Piri Pearsall-Akuira who shares her insights on what being a global citizen means to her after attending one of our Te Rangitāmiro summits in Tauranga Moana.

What does being a global citizen mean to me? 

I heard the term ‘Global Citizen’ for the first time about a month ago at the Te Rangitaamiro summit in  Tauranga. After hearing it explained in many ways this is how I interpreted it. A Global Citizen is someone  who raises awareness on issues both in their country and around the world such as climate change;  flooding, fires, deforestation, droughts etc. Equality and civil rights, food security, housing, among many  things. But all things considered they are a person who stands up for themselves, others, and the  environment. Even though I had never heard the term ‘global citizen’ I knew that it was something me and my whanau are all about. My aunty worked doing harbour care restoration for 4 years. She is passionate about the environment and ways to retain its natural state. My koro Tame is a political activist and fights for Māori sovereignty over the whenua and rights. My mum is a teacher who works with kids to give them knowledge and skills that they will use out in the world. Being a global citizen means you are open to learning new things. By having your own ideas and taking action, but also listening to others opinion and lastly caring and being a conservationist for the environment. 

Where do I stand in the community? 

I am a student, studying to become the next line of workers for the global community. I am a family  member, Māori, Pakeha, a female. All these things make me who I am, but I am not defined by them. I go  to protests about climate change, and injustices that happen in Aotearoa. I’m passionate about our natural  environment and love our planet. I have relations from all over the world and love to learn about different  cultures and ideas. 

Why are our global citizens and community important? 

They are because we have lots to share and learn from each other. We have learned to try and  communicate effectively so no wars break out. We really depend on each other for a variety of reasons.  Firstly, we need different resources from different places to keep our countries and people running  smoothly. Financial help when we are in need. And almost the most important, waste management. We  almost never think about where it goes, but did you know that our waste still gets shipped to China for them  to deal with?! We need medicines from different places to save people as well as food and clean water. It’s  also crucial for the economic state of countries that rely on tourists and travel to give them money. How do we encourage our whanau and friends to care about the global community? By telling them about it, talking about and discussing it. By looking at videos, podcasts, interviews, art, and  music. The global community hosts all cultures and people. We can join groups that inspire us and have  the same insights and appreciation for certain topics. By going to protests and taking a stand, acting on  things that are important to us, we can support our global community from home.

By Piri Wai Wherowhero Pearsall-Akuira  

Year 10 

Mt Maunganui College.

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The following kōrero (story) was written by a year 10 Mount College student, Piri Pearsall-Akuira who shares her insights on what being a global citizen means to her after attending one of our Te Rangitāmiro summits in Tauranga Moana.

Seek your whakapapa. Embrace your identity. Be courageous.

Te Aonui Wharawhara-Muriwai