A powerful and humane book, Healing Our History eschews rhetoric and cuts to the true story of race relations in New Zealand.
Robert Consedine was raised in an Irish Catholic 'community' in the working-class Christchurch suburb of Addington. From his involvement with the civil-rights movement in the United States to international relief aid visiting of Third World countries, Robert has witnessed the struggle for human dignity in some of the most marginalised environments in the world. Jailed for two weeks for his involvement with the anti-Springbok tour protests of 1981, Robert was deeply affected by stories from Maori prisoners, stories reflecting every kind of dispossession- disconnection from family, land, language, culture, unemployment, abuse, violence, low self-esteem and personal and institutional racism. Subsequently, Robert and Trish Consedine with the support of a network of Maori and Pakeha were inspired to set up Waitangi Assocaiates-an organisation that uses a combination of innovative educational strategies to assist the people of New Zealand in learning about and creatively confronting our colonial history. Robert has delivered Treaty education workshops in over 200 New Zealand organisations and transported the workshop model to Canada and Australia. Joanna Consedine grew up in an environment where she was aware from a young age about what constituted fariness and justice in teh world. Her background inspired her to choose courses at universtiy that deepened these values. After completing her Bachelor of Arts with Honours (First class) (Major- Education), Joanna worked as a tutor of a work-based training programme, facilitating the unemployed and school leavers with no formal qualifications into further training and employment opportunities. Returning home to New Zealand after her OE, Joanna then undertook contract work for Waitangi Associates and now works in career development.