Blog

Family Support Packages available for Pacific families in need

Tevita Funaki, CEO of The Fono - an organisation providing medical and social services to Pacific communities in Auckland and Northland, has a clear message to those needing food and welfare support during the unexpected lockdowns.

“We are ready to respond,” he says.

The Fono and other community organisations across Auckland including Pasifika Futures partners; The Village Community Services Trust, Mt Wellington Integrated Health Care and South Seas Healthcare, mobilised their staff and resources immediately in preparation to support vulnerable families who need urgent assistance.

Since the announcement, Mr Funaki’s team have been working around the clock to restock their shelves, made possible through donations from local businesses and support from the Pasifika Medical Association (PMA) through Pasifika Futures - the Whānau Ora commissioning agency for Pacific families.

“We’ve been through this before, this is our third lockdown. Our team are experienced now and are familiar with what support our communities need “, says Mr Funaki.…more


Entertainment

"YOUNG ROCK" cast interviews ft Uli Latukefu, Stacey Leilua & Ana Tuisila

“Young Rock” focuses on different chapters of Dwayne Johnson’s life. From growing up in a strong and resilient family, to being surrounded by the wild characters of his professional wrestling family, to playing football at the University of Miami, the show will explore the crazy rollercoaster that has shaped Dwayne into the man he is today and the larger-than-life characters he’s met along the way.

Starring Dwayne Johnson, Joseph Lee Anderson, Stacey Leilua, Adrian Groulx, Bradley Constant, Uli Latukefu, Ana Tuisila, Fasitua Amosa and John Tui.

Peep the cast interviews above.

"Young Rock" premieres tonight (17th Feb) 8/7c on NBC which is 2pm today in NZ

For kiwis wanting to watch the show, actress Stacey Leilua who plays The Rocks Mum says you can watch it on PeacockTV but you'll need a VPN.


Humans of the Islands

WOMEN OF THE ISLANDS - SILIKA ISAIA

SILIKA ISAIA 

2018 WINNER OF STAND UP STAND OUT & CURRENTLY STUDYING A BACHELOR OF MUSIC 

SAMOAN 

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Talofa Lava, I am a Pacific woman originating from the island of Samoa whose blood runs deeps within the soils of Fasito’otai, Toamua, Salelesi, Satui Malufilufi, Vaitele and Patamea Savai’i. My name is Silika Isaia and my greatest blessing in life are my Parents, my mother Leasi Levi Isaia and father Timoteo Isaia.

Born in Samoa, raised in Christchurch for the first half of my life, and now residing in Otara, never have I ever doubted my passion for music.

A two year old who landed in the land of milk and honey in 2004, with big brown eyes and curly short hair wearing a matching blue and white set that her nana bought her in Samoa, in awe of what I saw I had no idea that this place would foster my love for singing.

Similar to where all great stories began, my chapter one started in the House of the Lord and the first word of my book was God.…more


Humans of the Islands

PRIDE - PASIFIKA STORIES - Peyton Wolfgramm

In celebration of Auckland Pride Month, we're sharing Pasifika Pride stories.

Peyton Wolfgramm

(She/Her)

Doctoral Candidate/Councilor/Mental Health Advocate

Tonga 

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Peyton is a proud Tongan born in Auckland and was raised (and still resides) in Māngere. She is a daughter of migrants. Her father is from ʻUtungake, Vavaʻu and her mother is from Niutoua, Tongatapu. She is a sister to four brothers and one sister.  She is an aunty to nine nieces and nephews. Currently Peyton is a Doctoral Candidate at The University of Auckland, studying towards being a Doctor of Clinical Psychology. Weaved into this, she is a proud leitī.

As we know, this month is Pride month and we’d love to hear what “Pride” means to you?

Pride is the full acknowledgment of who one is. It includes the authentic expression and embodiment of oneself as an LGBTQIA+/MVPFAFF+ person in their unique context. But it also includes the ʻofa, acceptance and respect of friends, family and allies.

.…more


Blog

ALERT LEVEL 3 LOCK DOWN - RECAP, UPDATES & IMPORTANT INFORMATION

Three new community cases in a single South Auckland household were reported yesterday on Valentines Day.  Dr Ashley Bloomfield said last night in a media briefing at 7pm that a mother, father and daughter had tested positive for Covid and had been transferreed to quarantine while the other household contact is isolating at home.

UPDATE: New Covid-19 cases are UK strain and are not lonked to MIQ.  The UK variety of Covid-19 has proven to spread at a far higher rate and could possibly be more deadly than the original.  The PM said one of the most likely routes for transmission, so far, is from an international airline crew member.

University of Otago's public health dept has said that the spread of the virus thru handling of laundry was unlikely.more


Entertainment

Dwayne 'The Rock' Johnson on the Tonight Show with Jimmy Fallon

Dwayne 'The Rock' Johnson is on the Tonight Show with Jimmy Fallon and talks to him about his upcoming TV show about his life 'Young Rock' which stars a few of our Pasifika actors from Down Under.

One of those stars is Stacey Leilua who plays Dwaynes Mum, Ata Johnson.  They discuss her casting and Ata joins him to sing a song to Jimmy on her ukulele.

Check the vid out above. 

He also talks to The Rock's young co-star Bradley Constant who plays Dwayne at the age of 15 in the video below - 


Sports

CITY KICKBOXING STARS SUPPORT OTARA COMMUNITY BOXFIT

For the last two years MMA & Kickboxing fighter Sigi 'Showtime' Pesaleli has been running a free boxfit programme for his community in Otara out on the basketball court at Otamariki Park.

He started off on his own and since then the numbers have slowly started to grow and he now has the backing of the Otara-Papatoetoe local board and Bridge the Gap Charitable Trust.  He also set up the Desire for Greatness initiative or 'D4G' sharing his life experience with youth in South Auckland and developing leadership skills while also promoting mental health awareness.…more


Sports

NZ born Samoan recruited by University of California, despite never playing a game in the US

Ieremia Moore’s donning the University of California, Berkeley gear next season after having had three top schools chasing him.

His choice came down to three schools - CAL, UCLA and Duke and a couple of weeks ago he committed to the University of California.

Ieremia left a close-knit family behind to pursue his football dream but says his multi-ethnic heritage makes him feels at home in America's melting pot.

"My mother is Samoan with a little part Chinese," he said. "But I don't know much about my biological father except that he's a New Zealand Caucasian and part Maori."

As a football player, Moore played the sport at the club level in New Zealand and arrived in California to play football, but the pandemic has prevented him from playing games for St. John Bosco.

Yet he's taken part in different camps and made an impressive showing, receiving defensive lineman most valuable player honors at the SoCal National Preps Showcase.…more


Guest Writer

Why the Treaty of Waitangi is so significant for all Moana people

By FotuoSamoa Jody Jackson 

As Aotearoa commemorates the signing of the Treaty of Waitangi, I asked some of the Pacific people in my life, in private and on social media about what their thoughts were on the connections of Te Tiriti and Moana people. There was unanimous support and agreement that this is significant, and that we should be interested and taking the time to learn more about it.

The question was, What is Waitangi to you as a Pacific person and why should we care?

From Vaasiliifiti Simon in Christchurch:

Why should we NOT care? The same challenges happened to us as indigenous people in the past. We were faced with colonisation and it threatened our sovereignty and rights to our land. The Mau o Pule resistance in Savaii Samoa and the movement was born out of it was by the people. So for me, it’s not just a Maori story, it’s a Polynesian story but it’s also a universal story and we must support our brothers and sisters in Aotearoa”.…more


Blog

Where do Pasifika fit in the Treaty of Waitangi?

Koro Vaka'uta, RNZ Pacific Journalist

Waitangi Day conjures up different things for different people, but what does it mean for the thousands of Pasifika who live in Aotearoa?

Today Aotearoa-New Zealand marks 180 years since the signing of the Treaty of Waitangi between the British Crown and a number of Māori chiefs.

But where do our Pasifika whānau weave into that fabric? Do they see themselves as Treaty partners?

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Ali Leota is the president of Tauira Pasifika, the voice of Pacific tertiary students. He was raised in the diverse city of Porirua.

"We make up just under 50 percent of the population and growing up in Porirua, most of my friends were either Pacific or Māori.

"We learnt to grow side by side with one another and we treat each other like family," he said.

"There's always been that mutual respect ... based on the values we grew up [with] and we could relate on everything."

When it came to Pasifika and the treaty, Ali Leota compared it to a pōwhiri.…more