Despite being eliminated off Survivor NZ, Kaysha Whakarau will be remembered as the first contestant of Survivor who set out to normalise and promote te reo Māori.

Whakarau says she endeavoured to teach her fellow contestants one Māori word each day.

“I just taught people simple things like inu, kowhai, all the stuff that we would use around camp. I taught them what rice was, what tribe was and how to like put the sentences together.”

The Ngāti Raukawa, Ngāti Ruanui descendant says her family are very competitive, and with nine siblings, it's no wonder that she enlisted to compete in this type of competition.

“If you didn’t eat your dinner fast, someone else would eat it and so it was constantly a competition, it was a competition all the time at home and so that definitely prepared me for Survivor.”

Despite being the fourth contestant out of 18 to be eliminated from the show, Whakarau says her focus now is returning to work as a social worker based in Palmerston North.