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Pacific Island Leaders of Tomorrow


The Year 13 P.I.L.O.T (Pacific Island Leaders of Tomorrow) programme is a truly inspirational event. The event focuses on what it means to be a Pacific Islander in modern New Zealand and forces Year 13 students of Pacific heritage to deeply consider the values and principles that guided their parents and grandparents in their migration away from their homes.

The programme reinforces the notion that Pacific parents and grandparents are deeply aspirational for themselves, their children and for the generations that follow. The principles that guide their actions are the same principles that should guide us. It reminds students about what it fundamentally means to be Polynesian.

Pacific youth face many challenges as a result of navigating the difference in value systems between what they experience in their families and that of mainstream New Zealand. The P.I.L.O.T programme addresses this in a way that genuinely connects with unspoken elements of a Pacific person that made us all so much more ambitious for ourselves and for our community.

I am sincerely grateful for the opportunity to attend this programme and I, together with Visesio Tangifua, Leuasa Ensink and Logan Fenton, would like to thank the P.I.L.O.T programme staff for putting together such an amazing symposium. Thank you for being a part of our journey towards being the best versions of ourselves and we shall carry the values you taught us in our future endeavours.


Isabella Foliaki