An abysmally low number of Kiwis speak Maori -- less than 4 percent. If you are Maori, it is one in five, but there is definitely room for improvement.
But 18,000 kilometres away in Ireland a young Irish woman is inspiring and encouraging Kiwis to learn Te Reo.
Aoife Finn was so inspired by our native language she did a master's degree in Maori linguistics and will complete her PhD in 18 months.
But understanding the theory is not enough for Ms Finn; she wants to understand the culture and learn to speak. She wants to be able to have a conversation in Maori and do that in New Zealand one day.
Story spoke to the Irish scholar who has never visited New Zealand but is proving to be an inspiration for Kiwis.
Watch the video for the full Story report.