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Supporting community innovation for Pasifika people with disabilities

We are delighted to announce the recipients of Le Va’s Faiva Ora Community Innovation Fund, supported by the Ministry of Health’s Faiva Ora Pasifika Disability Action Plan.

The purpose of the fund is to support community-based initiatives that:

  • support disabled Pasifika people to lead innovation and take ownership of community led initiatives
  • empower Pasifika disabled people and their families to have a voice
  • reduce stigma and discrimination of disabilities within Pasifika communities
  • increase access to the right support, including disability support services, and strengthening community and natural supports
  • support Pasifika people with disabilities to participate in their communities
  • enhance the wellbeing of Pasifika people with disabilities. 

Three community initiatives have been funded for their quality and innovation, commitment and intentionality. The initiatives will begin being delivered in May 2018, and all plan to be completed by July 2018.

The three initiatives provide individual and group projects, targeting different Pasifika people with disability populations. With Pasifika peoples and communities delivering these initiatives, the approach supports the idea encapsulated by the following Samoan proverb.

“E fofo e le alamea le alamea” – the solutions for our own issues lie within our own communities. 

1. Upskilling Pasifika people with disability “As I Am” (Natasha Barber Schuelke)

Several mainstream services exist to help train or place Pasifika people with disability into employment.

However, there is a lack of education services for younger Pasifika peoples with disabilities, to teach them the experience they need, as well as skills required for sustainable employment.

This initiative addresses that gap by developing and delivering three employment focused projects around Auckland, focusing on developing sustainable employment skills that people can then use to seek and gain employment. 

2. Pasifika Active Choice Exercise (PACE) and Nutrition project (Miranda Davis and Paul Lavea, PHAB)

PHAB will be delivering PACE – a 10 week exercise and nutrition programme run by, and to, Pasifika people for Pasifika youth with disabilities.

The project will utilise a combination of peer support, family support, a dietitian, a registered physiotherapist or occupational therapist, and trained youth workers, to tailor individual programmes and goals with clear outcomes.

The project provides a fun and interactive fully accessible approach, and is free of charge to Pasifika people with disabilities.

3. The People Place (Veta Endemann and Daniel Te’o, Blind Foundation)

Veta Endemann and Daniel Te’o will design, create and promote digital stories profiling Pasifika peoples with vision impairments sharing personal stories.

These videos will be produced, led and driven by Pasifika clients of the Blind Foundation. The stories will promote awareness of blindness as well as deliver messages of hope to blind and vision impaired people. 

For more information, please contact Le Va disability lead, Ben Tameifuna.

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