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FLO Talanoa reaches the Centre of the Universe in Flaxmere, Hastings

Guest Blog: Panu te Whaiti

Kia ora and Kia orana from the centre of the universe Paharakeke, also known as Flaxmere in the sunny Hawkes Bay!

Three FLO Talanoa Facilitators from the Hawkes Bay completed the delivery of their first community FLO Talanoa workshop, hosted by Flaxmere College and “Talk to Me Community” Trust. Special thanks go out to Flaxmere College principal Louise Anaru and ‘Talk to me’ community Trust member PT aka Patricia.

 Facilitators Raynor Huia (“Talk to me” Community Trust member), Sharnite Raheke (“Talk to me” Community Trust member) and Panu Te Whaiti (Registered Nurse at Totara Health, Flaxmere) realised the high demand for the workshop in Flaxmere, being a quintile 5 community with a high population of Maori and Pasifika heavily impacted by suicide within the last 3 years.

 It was decided by the leaders of the “Talk to me” Community Trust to have the FLO Talanoa workshops delivered over 4 separate sessions once a fortnight and in the evening. This was to accommodate the availability of the youth in attendance, and for others that had work commitments including the facilitators.  Attendees of the workshops consisted of 7 Maori and Pasifika Youth, 2 local Kaumatua, 2 representatives from local Maori Health Provider Te Taiwhenua O Heretaunga and the Hawkes Bay district Health board.

A strong community connection was developed over the 4 sessions by those who attended, including us facilitators resulting in the creating of a community action plan to meet at the local park to have kaikai and plan for the next roll out of the Flo Talanoa workshop.

Participants were significantly challenged with their personal views around suicide, particularly the youth. None of which were aware of the impact of suicide within our Pasifika community across New Zealand.

FLO Talanoa is found to be culturally appropriate in the Flaxmere community and we believe its impact has been through the acceptance of the information by our community around the topic of suicide. The cultural stressors our Pasifika youth face on a daily basis was a huge talking point for the youth at the workshops and likewise a huge learning curve for our non- Pasifika participants.

We are grateful for the Flo Talanoa workshop and the Pasifika elements it brings, to not only our Pasifika communities, but also those who work with our Pasifika families. Thank you to Leva for sharing FLO Talanoa and a member of the Le Va team originally from Flaxmere with us.


Love and Blessings,  

From us in Flaxmere, Hastings. 


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From time to time general news is published within Le Va

Covid-19 Update

Face-to-face workshops will not continue while New Zealand is at Level 4. We will be in contact with all participants soon.