Health and well-being was regarded with high importance at our initial consultation with the 100 women attending the first Pasifika Women’s Forum in 2013. Through the monthly network meetings various health issues have been addressed depending on the needs identified by our ladies. This has resulted in community education forums addressing diabetes, breast cancer, suicide, prostate cancer for men which is delivered within a safe cultural meeting place for our participants to share information, build relationships and work together to build strong and holistically healthy families.
EDUCATION & TRAINING
Education was a key pillar identified from the 2013 consultation. PWA formed a partnership with Sherwood Institute of Training to deliver 3 certified training courses in 2014 to members from our community. Members of the PWA committee worked tirelessly with the training institute and participants to culturally tailor the training, ensuring the best educational experience and outcomes were gained by the students. Congratulations to the participants who have completed the course and gone onto various employment opportunities. We look forward to further education & training opportunities for our community.
One of our organisational intents is to be a service provider of choice for our women, services, various levels of government and other stakeholders. To do this, numerous avenues have been used to continue to create opportunities to network and build relationships, share information and collaborate where possible. PWA has achieved this intent through:
- PWA Network Meetings: Open to both stakeholders and community members for the purpose of sharing information about various projects, raising areas of community concern and strengthening relationships,
- Pasifika House: An office space established for three organisations from the Pacific Islands (Pacific Island Reference Group Inc. & Cook Islands Association)
- Community Forums/Talanoa: To remain responsive, various forums have been delivered to address various issues which have been flagged by members as well as organisations. Presentations addressing the effects of climate change on the Pacific, domestic violence, gestational diabetes, navigating the health system on the Metro North, cultural diversity, family day care issues, culture the strengths and barriers for women, young people and children, mental health, business, social ventures to name a few. The strength of these forums is that it is not driven by PWA but merely facilitated as a response of the needs identified by the community.
- Attending consultation forums: In 2014, PWA were invited to attend consultations delivered by Federal, State and local government to inform policy, practice and research, which were key for us to participate in the dialogue to ensure the interests of our women and community were raised.
- Collaboration with women organizations: WOW festival 2015, African & Middle Eastern Women’s Groups, GOPIO Women’s Group, Economic Empowering Women’s Forum 2014
Women form the heart of a home. As a women’s organisation, it is our duty to address the many issues affecting our Pasifika families and work towards solutions for our future generations. Domestic and family violence is one of many pressing issues prevalent to the Pacific and since 2013, PWA has collaborated with the Leniata Legacy as strong advocates of domestic and family violence. We look forward to collaborating with many other organisations to aid build healthier, stronger and safer Pasifika family communities.
CULTURE & ART
As a cultural women’s group, keeping the rich culture and traditions of the Pacific is of utmost importance. Over 20 different island nations are represented within the Pasifika Women’s Alliance, each of which bring a different flavour to each of the PWA events and projects. The Pasifika Women’s Alliance proudly encourages the sharing of culture through dance, song, story-telling, traditions, artefacts and practices of the entire Pacific – Melanesia, Micronesia & Polynesia.