News Centre

Pasifika Psychiatrist Inspires Students

The Sancta Maria College Tongan Group had the pleasure of listening to the wise words of psychiatrist Dr. Siale Foliaki on Tuesday as the guest speaker for this week’s Tongan Group gathering. Dr. Foliaki spoke about how grateful we should be for our living situation, how he helps others in our community and how we can start preparing mentally and physically for our futures.

Dr. Foliaki is a graduate of the Otago University School of Medicine and became a Fellow of the Australian and New Zealand College of Psychiatrists in 2006. He has been helping out in our community ever since and loves his job. Mrs. Pahulu, leader of the Tongan Group introduced Dr. Foliaki as “an advocate, committed to ensuring that Pasifika children are resilient and grow up to be strong and tough psychologically.”

Dr. Foliaki started off with a story, talking about money: “There are two types of people in this world, ones that would take the money straight away, or there’s the type of people that would try to get more.” He explained that you are either satisfied and thankful for what you have, or you have that courage to take that risk and do more.

“I thought the talk was really interesting. I found it interesting because I learned more about different people and how they can be affected by different situations,” commented Year 7 student Kingston Jones-Ofisa, a new member of the group.

Dr. Foliaki also spoke about how important it is to start planning our futures now, physically and mentally. He said that if we know what we want to do now, we will have all the building blocks and steps to get us there. “Preparation is key,” he stated.

We thank Mrs. Pahulu, leader of the Tongan Group for all the preparation that has made this possible and also Dr. Siale Foliaki for giving up his time to be with us.

Marina Jones & Gwendolyn Brighouse