Free period products in schools to combat poverty

Pasifika young women in New Zealand will benefit from the latest government initiative which will see girls and young women from the ages of 9 - 18yrs old have access to free period products in schools.

"Young people in Waikato will be the first to have free access to period products in schools in another step to support children and young people in poverty,” Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern said.

 During term 3, the Ministry of Education will begin providing free period products to schools following the Government’s $2.6 million investment. The roll-out will begin at 15 Waikato schools and be expanded to all state and state-integrated schools on an opt-in basis in 2021.

 “We know that nearly 95,000 9-to-18 year olds may stay at home during their periods due to not being able to afford period products. By making them freely available, we support these young people to continue learning at school,” Jacinda Ardern said.…more


New Training and Apprenticeship Programs Available to aid Covid-19 Recovery

The Government has released a list of training and apprenticeship programs that they intend to fund, in order to aid in Covid-19 recovery. 

• The Targeted Training and Apprenticeships Fund (TTAF) will pay costs of learners of all ages to undertake vocational education and training
• The fund will target support for areas of study and training that will give learners better employment prospects as New Zealand recovers from COVID-19
• Apprentices working in all industries will have costs paid
• High demand areas, including in regional New Zealand, targeted
• In many cases apprentices, trainees and learners at tertiary providers will save between $2500 and $6500 per year.

The Government has made it easier for New Zealanders who want to train in industries where demand is expected to grow as the country recovers from COVID-19.

Education Minister Chris Hipkins said the fund, announced as part of Budget 2020, will encourage and support New Zealanders to undertake vocational education and training in these high-demand industries.…more


Artist call-out for new Moana activation; TAUTAI FALE-SHIP Home Residencies.

Set to feature 20 Moana artists over five months via Tautai’s upgraded digital platforms, Tautai has put the call out to creatives of the Moana based in Aotearoa to apply

Each TAUTAI FALE–SHIP Home Residency will take a week long deep-dive into the sacred space of an artist – their fale. Selected artists will share insights around maintaining creative wellbeing, the inspiration behind their work and knowledge they have gathered along their journey. 

“Now is the time, more than ever, to celebrate and support artists in our own back yard.”
Courtney Sina Meredith – Director, Tautai. 

This opportunity is open to arts practitioners from visual arts, music, sculpture, dance, design, poetry, prose, performing arts, film and fashion through to emerging art forms. Each successful applicant will receive $1000 NZD koha. 

Applications are due by Friday 5th June 2020 at midday - you can apply here: APPLICATION FORM


The Unique Samoan La'au Selu

Ruby Satele tells Coconet TV about how these two samoan Selu are particularly unique. 

What is so unique about Samoan selu? 

These particular sets of selu are tall and elongated in form, making it visible even from front view. Each of the combs are significantly decorated and no two combs are the exact same. They are unique from other Samoan selu as these are purely decorative hair adornments and perhaps the only practical element it may have is to secure a hair style in place. The selu la’au (wooden comb) is a special one and also unique, even in the Pacific, for its level of detail and intricacies embedded in a thin, wooden comb.


Can you describe the dfiferent types of selu that are in the collection? Did they have different ornamental uses and what are each one made of? 

There are two types of selu in the collection; selu tuāniu and selu la’au. The selu tuāniu is made from multiple midribs of the coconut leaflet and held together by lashings, often sennit lashings.…more


Meet the Palagi Boi who can speak fluent Samoan

Originally from Chicago, USA, Palagi Boi aka Jeremy Hawkins shares how he came to speak Samoan fluently and teaches us some simple Samoan phrases that are easy to learn and will get you some brownie points with your Samoan friends!



Shot & Edited by Adrian Mcbirney 


Keepin it Fresh at Waitangi ki Manukau

It's a flashback to summer on Waitangi Day in Manukau! With General Fiyah, Shepherds Reign, Aaradhna, Sid Diamond and more!

Celebrate Aotearoa with us!



Director - Shimpal Lelisi

Camera Operator - Fa'anati Mamea 

Sound Operator - Marcus Lawson 


PMA Scholar: Pacific support network inspires success in health sector

After graduating from a Bachelor of Medicine and a Bachelor of Surgery (MBChB) at the University of Otago School of Medicine in December 2019, twenty-six-year-old David Nair has been working as a first-year health surgeon at Christchurch Hospital.

He’s also the recipient of the Pasifika Medical Association’s Papali’i Dr Semisi Ma’ia’i University of Otago Scholarship which he utilised to go back home to Fiji and work in hospitals there as part of his elective.

“Part of the reason for applying was I needed help financially for my final year of studies at med school, to cover the cost of electives. Receiving the scholarship meant that I could go back home to Fiji and work in a hospital and cover costs for flights and accommodation. I was also able to bring my parents and grandma over for a week. It was their first time back home in 20-years.…more

Guest Writer

Samoan Language is needed in Australia

By Lefaoali’i Dion Enari

Despite Australia being the new land of milk and honey for Samoan and Pasifika people, we face challenges of language survival and sustainability. My love for the Samoan language and anger for its exclusion from the school system was the reason I decided to do a PhD (Doctorate of Philosophy) on Samoan cultural and language practises in Australia.

Growing up in Brisbane I would see many Samoan and Pasifika people financially doing well. However, as the influx of our people grew, so did the importance of our Samoan language and culture. Since I was a child, I was angry at the fact that Japanese and German were taught at school, instead of indigenous aboriginal and Samoan languages. My frustration was driven by the fact aboriginals are tangata whenua to Australia and majority of the students at my school were Samoan.

I had always loved the Samoan language, as everything sounded more reverend, poetic and sophisticated. Not to mention, it was cool and a way we could communicate in public without anyone knowing what we were saying.…more


Gagana Samoa builds trust with patient-doctor relationship

Junior doctor at Middlemore Hospital, Tuipoloa Opetaia Aati is using his mother tongue⎯ Samoan to break down cultural barriers in medicine to help connect with his patients and better understand their medical needs or diagnosis. He has at least one medical consultation in Samoan a week and is happy he can be a familiar and approachable face for Pasifika coming into the hospital.

“Having fluency in Samoan was definitely a skill I wanted to incorporate into my profession. I know it acts as a form of bringing down the barriers between the doctor and the patient and brings us on the same level. There is a power discrepancy in patient-doctor relationships, knowing Samoan helps in this way with Samoan patients,” he says.

“I hope that speaking Samoan helps Pacific patients to feel comfortable enough to converse freely with me during consultations. It also allows me to form a relationship with their family especially, if there is a family member that is responsible for taking care of them.…more


Congratulations to 1 News/TVNZ reporter Barbara Dreaver for her two wins at the Voyager Media Awards last night

Congratulations to 1 News Pacific Correspondent Barbara Dreaver who won 2 major awards at the Voyager Media Awards last night for her coverage of the Samoa Measles Epidemic last year.  

Barbara who was born and brought up in her Mothers home island of Kiribati has always been passionate about the Pacific Islands and fighting for Pacific Islands issues to be covered in mainstream media.

She said of winninng both awards "I am so super proud to take out two major categories - 'Best TV news story' and 'Best coverage of a major event' but winning it for my Samoan measles coverage is bittersweet. While I am thrilled that the significance of this tragic event is recognised it does feel wrong in some ways to celebrate because of the lifetime of hurt so many families have ahead of them." 

She said the Samoan measles epidemic affected her profoundly on both a personal and professional level and she really struggled with witnessing so much needless grief.…more