TALATALANOA – Maori and Pacific Fa’afafine, Takataapui, Akavaine, LGBTQI youth; an approach to education pathways and career development
In March 2015, a mentoring and vocational career pathway initiative was established for Pasifika Rainbow youth.
Beginning out of conversations of Pasifika Rainbow youth with Pasifika workforce and career development consultant Josephine Samuelu, the TALATALANOA programme began to emerge.
TALATALANOA is a workforce-orientated programme that aims to:
- EQUIP young people with the right information about tertiary education courses and career pathways/options
- ENABLE them to access the right support to successfully complete their education and set career goals; and
- EMPOWER young people to be proactive and work towards achieving their goals to have a successful future.
The programme runs for 10 months, starting with fortnightly sessions over the first three months, followed by monthly catch ups for the remainder of the period. These workshops are facilitated by Josephine, so Pasifika Rainbow youth can have open talanoa, and are provided career and education pathway guidance and advice. Everyone’s progress and achievements are monitored to show progress and success over time.
Based in Mangere, the inaugural group of 10 young people met over the course of 2015 to discuss, plan, support and implement their personal goals. By December 2015, all young people had achieved 80 per cent of their goals for the year.
This was a significant achievement in the lives of these young people who, at the beginning of the year, were unsure about what they wanted to do in life, had very little future ambitions and lived from day-to-day.
TALATALANOA has enriched their lives by increasing their self-esteem and confidence and has also mobilised and motivated young people with a sense of purpose to pursue and achieve their goals.
In 2015 the following goals were achieved.
- A student graduated with a Bachelor of Health Science Degree.
- A student is in her second year of a Social Work Degree programme.
- A student has become a Zumba instructor and enrolled to study to be a qualified Personal Trainer
- A student has enrolled in a Business Retail Course.
- A student has completed the Foundations of Nursing course and enrolled into a Nursing Degree programme.
- A student is in Japan teaching English.
- A student has enrolled in a Social Work degree programme to start in 2016.
- Three students are working part-time.
In November 2015, Josephine, two students and Tanu Gago, community engagement coordinator from NZAF, were supported by the Rule Foundation, NZAF and Le Va to present at the Healing Our Spirit Worldwide Conference 2015 in Hamilton. They talked about the development and successes of TALATALANOA, Pasefika LGBTI past, present and future and the LoveLIFE Fono 6 led by Tanu Gago. The presentation was very well received!
For those interested in learning more about TALATALANOA, a 2016 group will start up again in February. For more information email email@example.com.
Below: Young people participate in the TALATALANOA workshop.