Celebrating the 2021 Futures that Work Pasifika scholarship recipients
O le ala i le pule o le tautua – the pathway to leadership is through service
The Le Va Futures that Work Awards are an investment, not only in each individual, but also in the future of our country, Aotearoa New Zealand.
2021 marks the 13th year the Ministry of Health, through Le Va, has funded and supported the development of our Pasifika mental health and addiction workforce in Aotearoa New Zealand. To-date we have provided 765 awards to 583 of our Pasifika people.
When we first started out with Futures that Work we awarded only 30 recipients. 2021 we are honoured to award 133 recipients. For a minority people in Aotearoa that is a huge achievement for our Pasifika mental health and addiction workforce. We know that our people still have a way to go with improving our health outcomes. However, we know having Pasifika in our mental health and addiction people in the services as nurses, social workers, occupational therapists, clinical psychologists and doctors makes a big difference.
These awards also recognise that each recipient has the potential to feature among the best and to be leaders in the mental health and addiction sector. New Zealand and Pasifika communities need high calibre professionals working in the mental health and addiction sectors. Here at Le Va we believe that our families, communities and New Zealand deserve nothing less than the best. The 2021 recipients represent our journey, as a people, towards better outcomes in the mental health and addictions sector.
We believe that the acknowledgement of Pacific cultures plays an important part in addressing health issues for Pasifika. It is good to see that Pasifika cultural aspects are being incorporated more into health services. This approach is reflected in the Awards Pacific programme, which supports each recipient during their studies.
It is always an honour for Le Va to address a gathering of Pasifika from our many different cultures that are achieving in their field of endeavour. Our hope of the Futures that Work awards are to celebrate and treat our recipients as the heroes they are.
We also want to acknowledge this year’s award winners for their commitment in answering the call to serve their communities and to help ease the health burdens facing Pasifika in Aotearoa New Zealand. Just as important we must congratulate the Ministry of Health for investing in Pasifika and for entrusting Le Va with this important workforce development work.