PM’s Baby: Meet Neve Te Aroha Ardern Gayford

By Talisa Kupenga

Jacinda Ardern and Clarke Gayford’s new baby has been given a Māori middle name, Te Aroha. It reflects the amount of love the baby has been shown even before she arrived according to her mum. The baby's full name is Neve Te Aroha Ardern Gayford.

Beaming in their daughter's presence, a reaction that ties to the meaning of her name and the time which she was born.

Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern says “we chose Neve because we like it and when we met her we thought she looked like she suited the name. Also, it means in various forms it means bright and radiant and snow which seemed like a good combination for Matariki and for solstice."

Te Aroha is a name the couple picked early on; a nod to where Ardern's family is from and an acknowledgment of the love shown for baby Neve.

Ardern says "Te Aroha was our way of reflecting the amount of love that this baby has been shown before she even arrived and all of the names that we were gifted along the way I thought 'how do I reflect the generosity particularly from all of the iwi who gifted us names'."

Names gifted by iwi include Te Waru o Noema from Ratana and Waimirirangi from Ngapuhi. Ngapuhi also offered a place to bury her placenta at Waitangi.

Ardern says "The [names] that were given to us by iwi, particularly when we visited certain marae were really special to us and in the end, we really tried to find a way to capture all of that in one name which is why we chose Te Aroha.

“As for Ngapuhi I said at the time that I thought that gesture was incredible and we were really moved by it but we weren't really going to publicly comment any further."

After three nights in hospital, the trio are now at home and Ardern will have 6-weeks leave.