Auckland-based iwi Ngāti Whātua Ōrākei has announced they will be providing grants to support their kapa haka performers.
The move marks the first time the iwi has included kai haka [performers] in their sports fund, valued at $500 each.
Thirty-three iwi members performing for nine teams based between Northland and the East Coast will receive the grant.
"Kapa haka is a sport, so why not incorporate it into the sport grant that we offer whānau to go national," Wesley Teua told TVNZ's Te Karere
Kingi Makoare says there are many costs that come with being a performer, and the grant will make a difference to those heading away.
The grant will be distributed this week, ahead of Te Matatini, the eagerly-awaited Māori performing arts festival that is held every two years.
This year's event is in Wellington, and expected to draw over 60,000 people.