Whanau today translates as family, and is often refered to in Pakeha as extended family, but the whanau is more wider than the extended family.
Whanau encompasses not only your:
- parents and their siblings
- your brothers and sisters and cousins
- your nieces and nephews
but also everyone who is connected to you through blood, be they your cousins children, your great uncles and aunts desendants, your 3rd cousins, your 99th cousines, everyone.
If a connection can be made, then whanau is established.