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Pacific Language Weeks

Pacific Language Weeks

Mālo ni, Fakaalofa lahi atu, Kia orāna, Tālofa lava, Mālō e lelei, Talofa, Noa'ia, Ni sa bula vinaka, Mauri, Tēnā koutou katoa and warm greetings to you all.

The Ministry is gearing up to announce the dates for an exciting 2024 Pacific Language Weeks line-up.

This year, we're looking forward to introducing two new language weeks for Solomon Islands Pidgin and Papua New Guinea Tok Pisin.

We're in the final stages of planning with communities - stay tuned for the upcoming announcement on our website, social channels and Fetu newsletter very soon. 

Past celebrations

The overarching theme for the 2023 and 2022 Pacific Language Weeks was sustainability, which aligned with our Pacific Languages Strategy 2022-2032 and fed into the UNESCO Decade of Indigenouse Languages to sustain and revitalise heritage languages.

Our communities told us that Pacific languages, cultures and identity are essential to the health and wellbeing of Pacific peoples in Aotearoa New Zealand. 

Behind the scenes, our Languages Team and community groups work to develop promotional material, collate and publish videos that showcase the communities’ language and culture.

Resources

We've collated a range of free eye-catching resources for you to download and help promote Pacific Language Weeks 2023: Download resources.

History of Pacific Language Weeks

Pacific languages are a key cornerstone for the health and wellbeing of Pacific people. History shows us that a loss of language leads to a loss of culture and identity. 

Language Week celebrations had their origins in Samoa in 2007 with Vaiaso o le Gagana Samoa, founded by Fa’alapotopotoga mo le A’oa’oina o le Gagana Samoa i Aotearoa (FAGASA). In 2009, the Human Rights Commission came on board to support the communities and the concept of Pacific Language Weeks was born.

Since 2010, the Ministry for Pacific Peoples has been supporting Pacific Language Weeks, promoting and raising awareness of the diversity of our Pacific languages in Aotearoa. Each year, the Ministry works closely with Pacific communities’ to maintain and promote indigenous languages across the country, encouraging their use in our daily lives to help them thrive.

While each language is highlighted with a dedicated ‘week’ of activities, each event is actually a yearlong celebration of the languages, with extended activities throughout the year. These activities and language learning initiatives are led by our Pacific communities throughout Aotearoa and supported by the Ministry.