Our Why

‘Real Talk’ has been created to establish a sense of belonging for all of us.

We understand how important it is to empower and inspire each other.

That’s why we have created the ‘Real Talk’ platform.  Where REAL people are able to share their REAL stories to inspire and empower others.

‘Real Talk’ will allow people to come together to encourage, support and guide each other, in a safe and comfortable environment.

New Zealand has some of the highest youth suicide rates in the developed world.  654 people died by suicide in New Zealand in 2020. Of this, 174 were Māori suicides and a total of 78 deaths were made up made up of rangatahi aged between 10-25 years old.

We know that the Real Talk kaupapa and kōrero is making a positive impact in Aotearoa, and can contribute to improving rangatahi wellbeing and reduce the likelihood of suicide for rangatahi.

Everything we do is about inspiring, encouraging and motivating our audience and beyond.

2021 Events

Our Real Talk events are full of powerful and inspiring kōrero!

Stay in the know with when we announce our next events by following us on social media!

Our Real Talk 2021 Speakers

Read about Jess!

My name is Jessica Tyson but please call me Jess! I'm a reporter for Te Ao Māori news at Māori Television. 

I am the former Miss World New Zealand 2018 and have represented Aotearoa at multiple international beauty competitions. After winning MWNZ I started my charity Brave which works to help young people affected by sexual harm.

In 2014 I graduated my Bachelor of Communications Degree majoring in journalism so I have a huge passion for writing and getting information out there! My blog is based on anything and everything that interests me - like beauty, healthy eating, fitness, exercise, Māori, te reo Māori, news and raising awareness about important issues!


You can find her on Instagram @jessicatyson08


Or on her website here

Read about Raniera!

Raniera Rewiri (Te Whakatohea, Tūhoe, Te Arawa and Ngāpuhi) is proud to be both Māori and vegan and considers his journey to be about finding the connections between the two and how it can contribute to the wellness of tangata Māori, whenua and Māoritanga. He is driven by hauora, self-development, learning, supporting rangatahi Māori, being in nature and cooking/eating healthy food. His passion for personal growth is one of the main factors that to led his journey to become vegan which he openly shares on social media. Though he never set out to be a social media influencer, the followers came, drawn to his journey, and his following has now grown to over 17k people.  Public response to his online content has been positive with words of encouragement and amazement often found within the comment section. 

Raniera is now well known for his motivational preparation talk on Facebook and Instagram. He has also teamed up with his mum, Huia. to create their own food business called Tupuānuku as a vehicle to share his passion for improved wellbeing through plant-based kai. Through Tupuānuku, Raniera has also released an e-book titled Tupuānuku Eating Guide. This book gives an overview of veganism through a Māori perspective and how a plant based lifestyle impacts the human lifestyle. It also includes simple everyday recipes, shopping lists with money saving hacks and a four week meal planner.

One of the key ideas that Raniera portrays is veganism through a Māori lens. He describes an alignment between te ao Māori and a plant based diet with a key link between the two being the connection with the environment. He explains that it is our obligation as Māori to protect our land marks and one to do this could be to choose not to consume dairy and meat products.

Although none of his mahi explicitly uses the terms food sovereignty and food security, some of it can be considered as food sovereignty or security initiatives.

“Knowing who I come from and where I come from is embedded in me. That type of courage to navigate throughout life is installed in me. It’s in my blood. It’s in my whakapapa.”


He also hosts the podcast Planting Seeds, which shares inspiring conversations.


Read the full article here


You can find him on Instagram @plantbasedmaori


On his podcast Planting Seeds


On his YouTube channel @PlantBasedMaori


Or on Facebook @plantbasedmaori

Nicola ‘Nix’ Adams recently shot to Facebook fame after she posted videos of herself doing a make-up tutorial on her Facebook page Cooked Koreros With Nix.
But Nicola didn’t start her Facebook page as a platform to make funny beauty videos. It began as a way to help her reconnect with her children who she lost contact with after her son died and she began doing drugs. 
“Four years ago my two-year-old died, and I just lost everything.  There are a lot of families all over the world who can relate to what I have been through.  People from all over the world are wanting to catch up with me to talk about their daily struggles.
  “Whanau want help to get off drugs and alcohol and some want to be able to keep their children.”  Nicola hopes the success of her Facebook page will help her do just that.”
“I’m using this platform [Facebook] to talk about real sh*t. It’s not just for make-up, it’s not just about doing the perfect wings. It’s about real stuff, discussions (Korero) that my whanau can relate to “
Read about Pania!

Pania Tepaiho-Marsh (Ngāti Kahungunu ki Wairoa) began hunting for her own mental health. Now she teaches other women to hunt free of charge, giving them skills to feed their children.


She prioritises women in need for her free trips – beneficiaries, solo mothers and survivors of trauma. The women don’t shoot for fun; they shoot to feed their families.

“We [women] don’t get taught how to change a tyre, we don’t get taught how to use a screwdriver, all these little basic things,” says Tepaiho Marsh.

“I want to break that dependency. When families fall apart, the kids so often end up with the women. We need to make sure those women – especially in an economic crisis like Covid – that these women are fine, that they can still feed their kids.”

As a young mother of two in a “very bad relationship” Tepaiho Marsh began her adult life as a beneficiary – entirely dependent on the state and her partner.

Looking back, she recalls her dependence as “terrifying”, with her “mana[power] and self-esteem” eroded to nothing.


Tall with a warm laugh and quick, kind eyes, Tepaiho Marsh says that as a younger woman she was unrecognisable; lost, traumatised, and feeling she had no way out.

“It was a rock-bottom time,” she remembers, her voice dropping.

“If you’re dependent on the state or a partner to feed you, you’ve handed over your independence to someone else, and that’s plain scary. You honestly feel like you can’t get out of it because you’re living week to week, sometimes day to day, depending on how bad it is. And you’ve handed your power over.”


Watch the documentary Wāhine Warrior here


Read the full article on the Guardian here


You can find her on Instagram @wahine_toa_hunting



Ardon is already inspiring thousands online with his consistent and authentic content around all things fashion, dance, makeup and powerhouse motivation!

“When you can’t control what’s happening, challenge yourself to control the way you respond to what’s happening. That’s where your power is!” ?- Ardon

You can find him on Instagram @ardon_england
Read about Paige!

Paige is a māmā of two beautiful children with her husband, rugby player Sean Wainui. She’s a theatre nurse and proud Māori wāhine from Wellington.


She has always had a passion for the health profession and is an advocate for those who cannot be an advocate for themselves.


She has overcome so much in her career and life on her journey. She is an inspiration for thousands and uses her platform to empower other wāhine to chase their dreams.


You can find her on Instagram @paaigefox


Or on her YouTube @PaigeFox

Esmé is the multi-passionate mama behind Esmé Studio – @esmestudio_

Based on the Kāpiti Coast, she moved there to be surrounded by the things that inspire her and make her feel the most connected with herself: the gorgeous beaches, sweeping rivers, lush forests, and of course the culture and potential that this community brings! ⁠

A few years ago, she journeyed through a string of transformational life experiences. The discomfort that came from these experiences allowed her to find her passion for helping others. Esmé wants to connect and empower the heavy hearted, the confused and misunderstood – the ones in the midst of hopelessness and blurred vision. She also wants to connect with the positive, uplifting and equally charging women in their own fields on their own journeys!⁠

She is a mama to Bella Te Manawa and Léyla Wren. At 25 years old, she wants to empower women to prioritise their wellbeing through holistic self care and beauty practices.⁠

You can catch Esmé LIVE at Real Talk New Plymouth or tune in virtually with our online tickets!
You can find her on Instagram @esmehunt
Read about Hunter!

“I’m Hunter, I’m 22, born and raised in New Plymouth/Taranaki and my tribal routes originate from Ngai Tahu. I have probably been through any life experience a girl my age could only think about. ⁠

After years of battling, I have found myself again, thanks to the help of my family, some beautiful friends, some lovely therapists and most of all, myself. ⁠

I am so proud to say I have come out the end of such a dark time and place. ⁠

I continue to face obstacles to this day (as I’m sure we all do) but with the strength and resilience my past has given me, I can push through absolutely anything whilst maintaining a positive, beautiful and balanced state of mind (most of the time ?). ⁠

A big part of my heart and soul feels as though I was put on this earth and through all the challenges life has thrown at me for a reason. And I believe this reason is to share my experiences to others who are in need of strength, guidance and aroha to help get them through similar.”⁠

JUST WOW. Wise beyond her years! ❤️ We cannot wait to see her take the stage at Real Talk Nelson! ⁠

You can find Hunter on Instagram @hunterleekawana


TimProvise is a South Auckland based Maori comedian and social media personality who is from Te Atiawa decent. He rose to prominence with his podcasts “The Provise Project ” in which he interviews well known New Zealand personalities in a genuine and authentic manner with notable interviews with John Campbell, Suzy Cato, Mark Hunt, Che Fu and many other well known New Zealanders.
He also hosts the Bakery Run in which he travels around the country finding Aotearoa’s best pies and brings along guests.
South Auckland raised but Naki to the core, Tim mixes his off the cuff humour with the hard hitting reality of growing up in Manurewa.
Tim has a history in youth development and has won many awards in youth work in South Auckland and has been working in the public sector developing strategies in Schools to help youth offenders for over 10 years.
You can catch Tim at Real Talk New Plymouth!
Read about Lucy!

We are so fortunate to have the stunning Lucy Johnson as our singer for all of our Real Talk events! 


You can find her on Instagram @__lucysings

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