Paralyzed from birth, she wrote an award-winning book using a computer head pointer

Nathalie Heirani Salmon-Hudry is a writer whose inspiring work is bringing about positive change for people with disabilities in her native French Polynesia. She is the author of the moving autobiographical tale “Je suis née MORTE” (meaning “I was born DEAD” or “I was stillborn”) that she wrote using a computer head pointer. The book deals with “how you develop, how you grow up, how you … Continue reading Paralyzed from birth, she wrote an award-winning book using a computer head pointer

A poet and a teacher from Tonga

One of the longest serving staff of the University of the South Pacific in Fiji, Konai Helu Thaman is currently Professor of Pacific Education and Culture and was the UNESCO Chair in Teacher Education and Culture from 1998-2016. Ms Thaman was born and raised in Tonga where she received her primary and secondary education. She studied at the University of Auckland (BA in Geography), Auckland … Continue reading A poet and a teacher from Tonga

Say welcome to Heke, our new mascot!

This shy octopus is Heke, our new mascot. Everybody say hi! His name comes from the Rapa Nui word for “octopus”, similar to fe’e, feke or ‘eke in other Polynesian langage. And Heke sounded pretty good, so we kept it! Heke is pretty cute, but also very sporty and quite the model. Below you can see him on an outrigger, as an All Black rugby player, … Continue reading Say welcome to Heke, our new mascot!

This street artist from New Zealand makes giant murals of endemic birds

His name is Phat1, aka Charles Williams. He is a street-artist from New Zealand, where he started as a graffiti rebel spraying the walls of Auckland. But he got married (with another street artist, Lady Diva), got four children and now uses his talents for the promotion of indigenous culture and young artists. He is also a huge indigenous birds geek and lover. We met … Continue reading This street artist from New Zealand makes giant murals of endemic birds

This Tahitian art lover created a website for Oceanian art collectors

Artoceanien.com launched three years ago, and is now becoming recognized by art and artcraft lovers across the region. Paintings, drawings, sculptures and rare books from Pacifican artists can be bought in a few clicks, to the delight of its creator, Michel Cunéo. He created this whole scheme just to be able to see the hidden private collections in Tahiti. When Michel Cunéo lost his job in Tahiti, … Continue reading This Tahitian art lover created a website for Oceanian art collectors

This journalist created a trans-Pacific women-media organisation

Sharon Bhagwan Rolls is a second-generation Fijian women’s rights advocate working at the intersection of gender and media. Following a successful high-profile career as a radio and television producer and presenter in Fiji, she helped establish femLINKpacific in 2000 as a regional women-led media organisation that advocates for Pacific women as decision makers in the long-term transformation of their respective island countries. In 2004, femLINK … Continue reading This journalist created a trans-Pacific women-media organisation

The Pacific has 4 of the 10 most liveable cities in the world

Like each year, the Economist has just released its annual global liveability survey. And guess what? Out of the top 10 countries in which life is the coolest, according to the study, four are situated in the Pacific Ocean Area, more precisely in Australia, Canada and New Zealand. The top one of the economist’s list is Melbourne, in Australia. Moreover, the city has managed to keep the first … Continue reading The Pacific has 4 of the 10 most liveable cities in the world

Sashi Kiran’s tale of livelihood development in rural Fiji

Sashi Kiran is the trailblazing founder and chief executive officer of a grassroots not-for-profit that provides economic opportunities for underserved communities in Fiji. She started Foundation for Rural Integrated Enterprises & Development, or FRIEND as it is better known, after Fiji’s 2000 political crisis to create income generating opportunities for women and men from rural and peri-urban settlements and villages, youth and people with special … Continue reading Sashi Kiran’s tale of livelihood development in rural Fiji

Drinking kava and driving: what the science says

What does Science have to say about drinking kava and driving? According to Dr Apo Aporoso, a kava researchers at the University of Waikato in New Zealand interviewed by Australian media ABC, “a study testing driver reactions after a six-hour session of high-volume kava drinking found no statistically significant effect on driving ability.” So it doesn’t seem to be as bad as alcohol, but the researcher still … Continue reading Drinking kava and driving: what the science says

Takiora Ingram: an artist and a social fighter

Takiora Ingram has made significant contributions to improving the status of women in her native Cook Islands and the wider Pacific region over the last 40 years. She has been an effective leader in establishing public policy for improved marine resource management, and promoting Pacific Island visual and performing arts and artists, in her roles as Chair of the Pacific Islands Arts Committee of Creative … Continue reading Takiora Ingram: an artist and a social fighter