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The positive power of movement

The positive power of movement

  • 19 Jun 2023
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(Picture caption: Sport and exercise, performing arts and recreational activities and innovative learning opportunities play a vital role in providing self-confidence for young people.)   

There is power in movement and through movement we are challenged to go further, push harder and break barriers.

Active community programme coordinator Ausage (Sage) Fomai and the P4CIFIC Limited team recognise the positive impact movement has, particularly in testing times, such as during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Based in the Hawke’s Bay, Sage started his business journey as a personal trainer before seeking more meaningful roles which could influence change in Pacific communities.

With this goal in mind, he took charge of Ascende Global Church’s P4CIFIC initiative, facilitating exercise classes throughout the Hawke’s Bay as well as delivering Tū Step – hip hop step aerobics sessions for school programmes and group events.

When New Zealand experienced lockdowns throughout the pandemic, Sage and his team successfully applied for support from the Ministry for Pacific Peoples’ Pacific Aotearoa Community Outreach (PACO) – Omicron Fund to help them keep the community moving.

This fund was established to support Pacific communities to prepare, respond and recover from the social and health impacts of the COVID-19 Omicron variant.

“These lockdowns meant our communities were experiencing lockdowns which created barriers for families to stay active,” Sage says.

The P4CIFIC initiative looked to run online exercise classes to address these barriers.

Sage explains the initiative was run during the Red traffic light system in late 2021 to early 2022.

“We used funding to buy resources such as gym mats, exercise equipment, accessories for recording, uniform, and delivery online.  

“However, we had some funding left over because gyms opened up early into the delivery of programmes, removing the need for online classes.”

The classes had a wide reach and members who attended online classes have continued to stay active. 

“Our classes increased motivation for participants to stay active beyond the project,” Sage says. 

White it has been difficult to measure the impact of the programme directly due to updated COVID-19 rules, P4CIFIC Limited has moved its programmes to WOWbeing, another Hawke’s Bay organisation which mentors and builds future leaders. 

WOWbeing aim to instil a sense of belonging, positive self-esteem and wellbeing in young people. 

It sees the vital role of sport and exercise, performing arts and recreational activities and innovative learning opportunities in providing self-confidence for young people.  

The positive impact from P4CIFIC Limited continues to make waves throughout the Hawke’s Bay region, Sage says. 

Visit the WOWbeing website for more information about its current initiatives.