By Indira Stewart, RNZ

Read RNZ’s full investigation into Pasifika mental health here:  

Mental health will become the most important issue for Pacific people in New Zealand over the next decade, a South Auckland psychiatrist says.

Dr Siale Foliaki says self-harm and suicide attempts are growing issues in the Counties-Manukau district, which has the country's largest Pacific population.

"They sometimes end up in an intensive care unit. We see all sorts of self-harm, the sort of self-harm that would frighten you if you saw them, so some serious trauma. And you've got to ask yourself [what] the state of mind of a young person has to be able to inflict that level of trauma,” he says.…more



Keys Down, Real Talk – True Story #1

“Everyone that knows me, knows that I’m just the sober driver, and the main reason why is because I try make sure my friends get home”

Here is the first #KeysDownRealTalk story featuring Tha Movement.  The campaign message is simple: there’s no safe level of alcohol when you’re driving.

#KeysDownRealTalk is a new campaign aimed at reducing drink driving. The community-led initiative features three video stories created in collaboration between, South Auckland award winning sound/music & video producer Anonymouz, and three popular South Auckland urban music artists - Tha Movement, Mareko, Swiss and Ōtāhuhu-based DB Breweries.



P.I.C Museum - Celebrating 70 years

PIC church that beacon of Pacific Islandness in the middle of Krd, has been a home to generations of Pacific people and was the original hub for early migrants to form new communities in Aotearoa. The extraordinary legacy of this church is celebrated in an exhibition of images and memorabilia that spans the decades since it first opened. Check out some of the amazing Pacificans that were brought up at the church, and the many events and initiatives over the years that cemented our Pacific identity in Aotearoa.

Roz Tuitama (pictured above) coordinated the 'living museum project' and she shared her vision with us.

"At the entrance when you first walk in there's a scripture that says 'Now faith is the confidence in what we hope for and assurance about what we do not see'.  If you look at the journey from the 40s through until the present day, our people literally stepped off the boat, came and set up home here in faith.…more


MMT vs Australia behind the scenes

Our friends at Tutu on the Beach - Josh & Nox had the opportunity to travel with the Mate Ma'a Tonga team on the lead-up to their game against Australia in Auckland.

They share a few of the behind the scenes moments with the team to give the teams supporters a small taste of the heart behind the Board, Coaches, Staff and Players.


WORLD HOMELESS DAY - Locals act locally on a Global day

World Homeless Day is on the 10th of October every year and was born out of discussions between aid workers around the world, all of whom were helping the homeless in their own countries.

The aim and slogan of the Day is ‘locals act locally on a global day’. The emphasis is on giving hands-on aid that is sensitive to local needs in your community, while being aware of the global problem of homelessness and feeling solidarity with other charity workers around the world.

On this day, you can celebrate by helping to raise awareness for the homeless in your own community. Grassroots campaigns and fundraisers work at the local level, while taking advantage of the increased publicity and solidarity a global platform provides.

We had a look at one of the grassroots campaigns that has been happening in South Auckland as a solution to immediate and local needs in the area - PATAKA KAI or Open Street Pantries.…more


TATAU: A History of Samoan Tattooing

The sacred cultural practice of Samoan ta tatau is celebrated in the much anticipated book by Sean Mallon and Sebastian Galliot.  

Decades of work has gone into the comprehensive exploration of the history and shifting social contexts of the malofie in this beautiful hard cover edition.  Archival information sources from around the world and historic photographs sit side by side with contemporary pop cultural references of tatau in the modern day, in this important record of the journey of tatau.

For the two authors of the work, Te Papa senior curator Sean Mallon and ethnologist Sebastien Galliot the book is a labor of love of their passion and respect for this age old practice.

The book covers the 3000 year history of Samoan Tatau with a particular focus on the 1800s, the 1900s which Sebastian said they had more access to historical sources and the period in particular that they had a lot of archives and epigraphy, as well as of course the 20th & 21st centuries.…more


‘Tautai Arts Trust navigates a new way forward’

A new era for Tautai Pacific Arts Trust has been ushered in, after an intense fono, seeking to address the ‘state of crisis’ that the organisation has been in over the last year.

“I’m happy in the outcome and the  process we have managed to have, and that all the grievances were laid on the table” says arts veteran Sima Urale.

After a long period of controversial management, which saw formal and ad hoc complaints made from many Pacific artists, new board members have been voted in and a new director has been announced in the form of arts manager Courtney Meredith.

 Tautai has been the only annually funded pacific arts trust in Aotearoa for over 30 years. One of only two arts agencies to be given ‘Totara level’ funding by CNZ, it’s mandate is to work to promote contemporary Pacific arts in Aotearoa.

In recent months allegations of bullying and mismanagement have been made against former trust manager Christina Jeffery, who has since resigned.…more


Love and Fiji

“At the time we first got together, it wasn’t the norm to be dating someone of the same sex as you, especially in Fiji. We both come from religious backgrounds. There were restrictions and we were questioned a lot". - Lavonne

From the island of Fiji, where religious and cultural restrictions affects how the LGBTQIA community are treated, comes the story of two women who fell in love, left the island, and returned 12 years later to celebrate their marriage.

Lavonne and Petrina, both from Fiji, met on the island 19 years ago. The attraction was instant, and the pair have been inseparable ever since; but the journey hasn’t always been smooth sailing. The attitude towards gay culture in Fiji, and the wider pacific is still a battle many are fighting.

Same sex marriage has been legally banned in Fiji since 2002, and hate crimes are unfortunately not uncommon. Despite this, Trina and Von, managed to push through the backlash and return to Fiji for a wedding celebration of their own.…more


Sex & the Sugas - Part 7

Sex & The Suga’s, brought to you by The Coconet, is an after-hours series written exclusively by Pasifika women, talking about all things sex and sexuality. A subject that is usually shied away from in Island culture, five women of various ages, sexual identities and island backgrounds, reveal some of their personal experiences and explore what their sexuality means to them. Stay tuned for a new story each week, after 10pm every Wednesday! 


Teuila, 32, Samoan 

"My sex life over the last 3 years has been. . .adventurous and colourful with many lessons. I started the whole dating thing (which is a strange and funny concept in New Zealand in comparison to other countries I have dated in) a year after and to be honest I discovered that as a woman, to get sex was easy, far too easy.…more


Pasifika Books to Note

Our Pasifika Writers and Illustrators continue to flourish with a notable range of books, from romance novels & academic publications to educational children's stories! 

Check out these authors and their books, as well as and where to buy them! 

Free Love by Sia Figiel 

Set in 1980's Samoa,  'Free Love'  revolves around the first love experiences of a seventeen-year-old girl.

"An intimate and intoxicating tale of love and decolonisation. A star-crossed couple is caught between the bittersweet breaking of social taboo and rebelliously reclaiming the tapu of ancient beliefs, sex, stories and small gods. Sia Figiel will keep you up all night with her sensuous storytelling of sexual awakening and the spilling of secrets. Passionate, poetic and personal, it is set within a larger story; the spark of a Pacific indigenous renaissance, a region reclaiming itself in changing times. 
Dr. Karlo Mila

Sia Figiel is an award winning Samoan author, often referred to as 'Samoa's first female novelist'.…more