Young, Free & Pacific Youth Conference
Two of our senior students (and sisters) Mya & K'mora Katu recently attended the Young, Free & Pacific Youth Conference held at the Mangere Arts Centre. Read about their eye-opening experiences below from their post event report...
Going to this event we were excited and a bit nervous as it was our first time attending an event like this. But as soon as we got there we were warmly welcomed by the amazing team who made us feel really comfortable in reassuring us we would have a good time. And that’s exactly what happened. First off in the morning we played warm up games and everyone got introduced to all the schools there. Then we went into the main center where they held a cultural performance where all the islands were present including: Samoa, Tonga, Maori, Niue, Fiji and More! This was only the introduction to the cultural side of things we had done.
After the performance we had our first speaker who talked about being a Polynesian woman in the medical industry and how she dealt with all the pressure, hardships and how she got through it. Then after morning tea we split into four workshop groups we chose beforehand, which were: Spoken Word, Dance, Music and Drama.
We headed off to the dance workshop where we were split into smaller groups to create a big cultural dance performance which linked with all the other workshops. We practiced for a bit then had our second speaker Chantelle Huch and her inspiring journey as a Pacifica Hip Hop dancer and mentor.
After her talk we then had an amazing lunch which was delicious and provided for. The sapa’s included: sausages, chicken, chop suey, potato salad and coleslaw. After a tasty lunch, we practiced at our workshops some more then had our final speakers The Tonga Sisters and how the Hawaiian sisters were able to share their Pacific take on music and share it with the world. Listening to them as they sung and spoke was the highlight of our day as we felt we were able to connect with them and the reality of being Pacific teenage women.
Finally we ended the day with a performance from all 4 of the workshops and ended the amazing day off with a prayer given by the director of the event.
In summary, taking part in this event was so enjoyable and fun. Being able to meet other people from similar cultural backgrounds made us feel more connected to our Island side. Also listening to the speakers and understanding what they’ve accomplished in life has inspired us both to want to achieve big in and outside of school. Overall we would highly recommend all Pacifica to attend this event and to go in to experience and learn all about our culture.
- Mya & K'mora Kuta
To learn more about this fantastic event, go to https://www.pasefikaproud.co.nz/stories/young-free-and-pacific/