Kia orana and kia ora. On Wednesday 23rd November, a group of Pasifika and Māori…
Year 13 Pacific Island Leaders Of Tomorrow (PILOT)
On Wednesday 6th July, 3 Pasifika Year 13 students Joshua Siaki, Krishna Tolova’a and myself Teuila Leota along with Mr Fa’avesi Talamaivao travelled out to the Manukau Institute of Technology (MIT – South Campus) for the annual Pacific Island Leaders of Tomorrow (PILOT) event. The day started off with formal greetings and an inspirational speech from the first ever pasifika Auckland mayoral candidate, Fa’anana Efeso Collins. Efeso spoke about the importance of being proud of our ancestry and navigating the world as a Pasifika person. After Efeso’s incredibly inspirational speech, students were sent off in groups to do different leadership workshops. The three workshops were Accountability, Resilience, and Leadership. In Accountability we talanoa’d about the fale’s(houses) of our lives, we talked about the pillars that uphold our values and beliefs that we carry throughout our lives. We learnt that accountability looks like being reliable and owning your actions, to be accountable means to be true to your word through your actions. In the resilience workshop, we looked at how even though we go through tough times and we struggle, it’s about how we bounce back. It’s okay to fail and then take time to process that failure but the most important part where all your focus should be is about brushing yourself off and getting back up. In the leadership workshop, we learnt about the different styles of leadership through the elements of Fire, Air, Earth, and Water. Some people belong to only one element and some belong to a couple. Students chose to join the element that best suited their leadership styles and we discussed different scenarios and how each element would react. The main takeaway from this workshop was that there is power in diversity, each element is unique and resourceful on their own but collectively we are strongest working together. These workshops taught life lessons that we will carry with us throughout the rest of our lives. For young Pasifika people, it’s important for us to be surrounded by other young pasifika leaders who are focused on bettering ourselves and our communities. It’s important that we celebrate our culture and heritage, and to have pride in our island nations. It was such an honour and privilege to be a part of the 2022 Year 13 PILOT cohort. Fa’afetai tele lava to the university providers and organisers of the event.
“Our greatness is not measured by the size of our islands but the vastness of our oceans”
Teuila Leota 13BH