Le Va launches new Upstander initiative

Wed 18 May 2022

Le Va launches 'Upstander' initiative as part of the Atu-Mai violence prevention programme.

Screenshot of Atu-Mai webpage from Le Va website

New Upstander programme from Le Va

The Upstander programme is a new initiative within the Atu-Mai violence prevention programme from Le Va. The Upstander programme aims to equip Pacific youth and communities with the skills and knowledge to take a stand against violence.

The Upstander fono is a key component of the movement. The fono or workshops are free and for Pasifika youth aged 16 - 24. The fono will teach youth the differences between being a bystander and an upstander, and will show how caring for others is part of Pasifika culture.

The Upstander programme defines an Upstander as "...someone who notices a potentially harmful or dangerous situation and does something to make things right. They know what’s happening is wrong and have the courage to step up. To stop violence from happening in our communities, we must stand together against violence."

The Upstander workshop is for youth in the community who:

  • Identify as Pasifika
  • Are between the ages of 16-24
  • Want to find out what an Upstander is and how to upstand safely
  • Want to find out how upstanding reflects Pasifika values
  • Want to explore why 'violence is not our culture'.

The workshop objectives include:

  • Understand the difference between an Upstander and Bystander
  • Discover how being an Upstander is linked to Pasifika values
  • Learn about the steps involved in upstanding
  • Equip yourself with a variety of tools to upstand.

Young people can register their interest to participate with Le Va. For questions contact the Atu-Mai programme atumai@leva.co.nz.

Atu-Mai is a violence prevention programme led by Le Va that strengthens Pasifika communities by developing confident and resilient Pasifika young people. Atu-Mai is designed to equip Pasifika young people and their families with the right knowledge and tools to live violence-free. Other workshops from the Atu-Mai programme include:

  • I AM Cultural identity Fono: "Strengthen your self-worth through culture. Discover your Pasifika cultural values and how you can apply them in a modern world."
  • Fathers Fono Workshop: "Fathers Fono is a parenting workshop aimed at bringing our Pasifika fathers together and supporting each other to be the best Dads we can be."

Find and register for upcoming workshops from Le Va including the Atu-Mai workshops and Le Va's workshop on Engaging Pasifika Cultural Competency training for non-Pacific health and disability workers employed at a Ministry of Health funded services.

Atu-Mai also offers e-learning for young people and parents on safe and respectful relationships. 

Update: Le Va has launched a new e-learning programme at Atu-Mai, 1000 Days of Alofa - an interconnected community of local, regional and national leaders including parents, Plunket, Midwifery Council, heath professionals, researchers and policy specialists will help us embark on a journey in learning to build positive relationships with our children.

Related news

Pasifika Futures featured a talanoa on childhood trauma on radio 531pi from the Pacific Media Network. In the talanoa, Child and Adolescent Psychiatrist and Paediatrician Dr David Tan talks about what childhood trauma is, the effects of trauma and how to talk about it.

Earlier this year, Minister for Pacific Peoples Aupito William Sio announced the 2022 Pacific Language Weeks series:

  • Rotuman Language Week: Sunday 8 May – Saturday 14 May 2022
  • Samoa Language Week: Sunday 29 May – Saturday 04 June 2022
  • Kiribati Language Week: Sunday 10 July – Saturday 16 July 2022
  • Cook Islands Language Week: Sunday 31 July  – Saturday 06 August 2022
  • Tonga Language Week: Sunday 04 September – Saturday 10 September 2022
  • Tuvalu Language Week: Sunday 25 September – Saturday 01 October 2022
  • Fijian Language Week: Sunday 02 October – Saturday 08 October 2022
  • Niue Language Week: Sunday 16 October – Saturday 22 October 2022
  • Tokelau Language Week: Sunday 23 October – Saturday 29 October 2022.

For more information see the Pasefika Proud story on Pacific Language Weeks 2022.

Related media

Former Warriors throw support behind charity for Pasifika families , Stuff, 27.02.2022

New Year Honours: Champion of Kiribati community honoured for work, NZ Herald [Kapiti News], 10.01.2022

‘Hitting your kids isn’t helping’: Pasifika dads stand against family violence, Le Va and Tagata Pasifika, 18.11.2021

Motivation to change: A basketball coach's mission to support Pasifika dads, Stuff, 17.10.2021

Image: Screenshot of Atu-Mai webpage from Le Va website: https://www.leva.co.nz/our-work/violence-prevention/

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