Hui Fono Ako Learning Exchange

The Ako: learning exchange is an opportunity to teach and learn. The ako sessions will feature local learning initiatives on site, and invited guests who will demonstrate through interaction how they are using indigenous knowledge to claim our space through lifelong learning.

  • Huna o Poutū-te-rangi, Thursday 2 March: 3:00 – 4:30 pm
  • Ari o Poutū-te-rangi, Friday 3 March: 10:30 am – 12:00 pm

Mau Rākau 

Raniera Peterson
Kei āku nui, kei āku rahi

Tēnā Koutou Katoa

Ko taku ingoa Ko Raniera Petersen. He uri ahau nō Te Tau Ihu ō te Waka ā Maui.

I have been learning and teaching the art form of Mau Rākau for the past 20 years.

I am a current student of Te Whare Tū Taua ō Aotearoa and have been running a Mau Taiaha programme on Whakatū Marae for nearly two years now, and our classes are Whānau Hauora, Tikanga, Mātauranga Māori, Honongā and utilising Te Reo Māori while using the Taiaha to promote all things Māori. We want to empower our whānau to succeed in both the mainstream world and Te Ao Māori, and I’m looking forward to sharing my pūkenga with the Hui Fono Kaupapa.

Waihō mā te rakau e kōrero!

Weaving Pasifika Culture 

Nelson Tasman Pasifika Community Trust
The Nelson Tasman Pasifika Community Trust is the result of over 40 years of community representation. We have worked with government organisations and service providers to ensure the Nelson Tasman Pasfika Community is represented, and advocated for both regionally and nationally. After many years as a volunteer based organisation, with significant support from some key players across the region we became a service provider.

With over 2,500 proud Pasifika people across the region, as a trust we make it our mission to provide, support and strengthen the Nelson Tasman Pasifika community to grow and prosper through culture, advocacy and adult and community education. Nelson Tasman Pasifika Community Trust prides itself in its values that recognises its service to the Pasifika community to help support the growth and realisation of their dreams and aspirations as proud Pasifika people.

This Ako Learning Exchange will demonstrate our Pasifika culture and values that anchor the Nelson Tasman Pasfika Community Trust. Through our unique story, we will explore the art of kakala and how our rich cultrual knowledges that more commonly used in a tradtional setting, can be utilised in a modern environment to foster and affirm Pacific cultural practices in adult and community education.


Aiono Manu Fa’aea
Aiono is a practicing ethrnomusicologist, educator and a champion of lifelong learning. Aiono’s career has seen her teach music, social studies and english at secondary schools; lecture ethnomusicology at the University of Auckland; support educators realising student achievement and potential to advising various government agencies.

A former member of Komiti Pasifika with PPTA; judge of the ASB Polyfest Samoan Stage and a panel member on various Ministry of Education working groups including Gifted and Talaned, Pathways NCEA and more recently, the refresh of the New Zealand Curriculum and Te Whatu Kaitangi – Tertiraty Educator Awards. Aiono also leads online Pacific course that focus on raising the level of engagement and achievment of Pacific students whilst elevating pedagogies that are culturally responsive.

Critical thinking of vā or relational space has been featured predominantly in Pacific academic writing to convey how we connect and nutrute relationships.

  • How do we prepare ourselves to access our research mindset when we use vā?
  • Why should we be explicit with our use of vā in all the spaces we occupy?

This workshop looks at how we can critically reflect on a community perspective of vā steeped in Tongan (tauhi vā) and Samoan (tausi vā) notions of the term.

Active Citizenship: The Land, The Sea, The People

Peter Foaese and Melissa Lama
Peter is a youth worker, community educator, and the current South Pacific Executive Council Member for the Asia-South Pacific Association for Basic and Adult Education (ASPBAE). He works for the New Zealand Office of the Children’s Commissioner as a community and young person’s engagement specialist.

He is dedicated to supporting marginalised young people and their families to find/use their voice to transform their situations and the system. He has also worked as a youth worker with ‘Whakaoho’ and ‘Pacific All Stars’ – initiatives created and led by youth with family and community. Peter is a recipient of an ACE Aotearoa Award and with Melissa Lama has been running citizenship workshops for the sector.

Melissa Lama is the Southern Vice-President of P.A.C.F.I.C.A. inc from Ōtautahi. Melissa is proud Pacific community advocate particularly in advisory and youth representative roles which saw her lead the vocies of students at the University of Otago in 2022 as the President of Otago University Students’ Association. She has 10 years experience in NGO and public sector, including working as an advisor for the Ministry for Pacific Peoples. She has recently completed het Master of Business Administration from the University of Otago and is currently studying towards her Doctorate in Business and Administration, focusing on the political and economic influence of foreign aid in the Pacific region.

Are you working with learners in the civics education space? Did you know this year is an election year? In this Ako exchange workshop, Peter and Melissa will help you explore the concept of citizenship, from individual, local, and global identities. How do we participate? What informs our participation? How do youth participate in civics education, in Aotearoa?