Kiwi Junior Rugby League

Global Games Cultural Liaison and PR

Client: Global Games
Services: Cultural Liaison, Strategic Communication
Year: 2016 – 2023
Contributors:  Project Lead – William Stewart; Mātanga Toi Māori: Takutaimoana Harawira

In 2016, we collaborated with Global Games to bring to life the inaugural Kiwi Junior Rugby League Festival. Our focus was on fostering positive connections with local mana whenua, infusing the event with an authentic cultural essence. Our partnership extended to creating a memorable brand identity that honored tribal narratives and design elements, led by the talented Whakatāne artist, Takutaimoana Harawira. 

Global Games aimed to create an unforgettable cultural and sporting experience. To help achieve this, we reached out to over 20 marae in the Eastern Bay of Plenty, painstakingly coordinating marae-based accommodation for the participating teams. By immersing themselves in Māoritanga through marae stays and experiencing the spirit of manaakitanga, teams forged enduring relationships with the local hapū and marae community. Our considered approach to developing the programme ensured each marae received an additional koha on top of the typically modest hireage rates, acknowledging the exceptional and warm hospitality provided. Most marae also took up the opportunity to cater for their visiting team, amplifying the economic impact on both the marae and the region.

The inaugural tournament surpassed expectations and was celebrated for its substantial and unique cultural component. Although no longer based in Whakatāne, the tournament thrives today, and we take pride in our pivotal role in integrating authentic culture into its foundation.

Our association with Global Games is enduring and we are proud to be the preferred supplier of cultural advisory and strategic communication services this esteemed leader in global sporting events.