Highlights for the week beginning 8 September:


  • The Small Islands Developing States conference in Samoa 1-4 September was great. It was great to see the partnerships being formed around sustainable development for the SIDS. It was also great to hold this major international conference in our neck of the woods and Samoa did us all proud with the great organisation, warm Pacific hospitality and friendliness, and a clean, green environment which set the stage for a memorable event. Massey University represented by the Pacific Research and Policy Centre and the Joint Centre for Disaster Research held a successful event on the need for indigenous knowledge and indigenous approaches in disaster risk reduction;
  • The consignment of educational material for the Ha’apai relief effort will be flown by Air New Zealand to Tonga on Saturday. From there it will be transported by ferry to Ha’apai. The National Emergency Management Office is coordinating the goods once they land in Tonga. There has been intimation from the Office that it would like Massey University to be the main channel for coordinating the collection and dispatch of educational material and assistance to Tonga after any future natural disasters. If this is formalised between the government and Massey, it could form a useful template for working with other Pacific governments in the aftermath of disasters;
  • A useful meeting with the North Shore Pasefika Forum regarding the 29 November North Shore Pasefika Festival. Organising the Festival is in the capable hands of Sonny and Weaver Vagana. The Festival has been important event for all Shore communities not just Pasifika. Massey will support the Festival as it has done in the past;
  • An initial discussion has been had with the Tongan Methodist Church with an intention to visit or at least to communicate with the 19 branches of the Church in Auckland to share information about Massey’s programmes. A way will have to be devised to reach the other 17 or so branches of the Church that are scattered across the country;
  • My media comments this week concerned: the ACT and Internet Party leaders; the state of the general election campaign so far; SIDS conference; and the need for limited freedoms and democracy

Pasifika@Massey A Massey Site