Stories & articles of our work & our people
Manukau, AKL – Thursday 12 of September is a day to be etched in memory and New Zealand’s history, when 30+ people arrived from Samoa and received by the Pacific Settlement Support Services team.
PSSS provides settlement support services for Pacific newcomers to New Zealand which includes those who have been successful through the Samoan quota or the Pacific Access Category (PAC).
The Pacific Business Hub in Manukau City where PSSS is located was abuzz with activity with it’s 2-day Kiwi Life programme as they received individuals and families from Samoa who had been successful with the quota.
The day was opened with a prayer by Pastor Lui Ponifasio to bless and encourage our newcomers about life in New Zealand.
“Aua le faalogologo tiga, galue malosi ma le faamaoni, aua le ma e fesili mo se fesoasoani ma aua nei galo Iesu” – Don’t give up easily when things start to get difficult, work hard and be committed, don’t be shy to ask for help and never forget Jesus.
“E le o toe tafe le susu ma le meli i Niu Sila.” - Milk and honey doesn’t flow freely in NZ anymore. He ended by encouraging everyone to be involved in their new communities, enjoy the many opportunities that NZ has to offer and to be prosperous. This was followed by refreshments for our new comers to NZ and their families, which were about 50 in total on Thursday.
There was a resounding echo of gratefulness by our new comers from Samoa and their NZ families alike. “Faafetai lava mo lenei feasoasoani, e ese le aoga toe taua, manaia o lea ua iloa mai le ofisa e toomaga iai pea fia maua le fesoasoani.” - Thank you for this service, it is very useful and important and it is nice to know there is an office to go to when help is needed.
It was followed by a presentation by the New Zealand Police, delivered in the Samoan language, informing and educating the people about Law & Order as well as a presentation from Inland Revenue Department who helped the team with processing IRD numbers.
Friday saw the team doing one-on-one sessions with each individual or family to find out what their immediate needs are and what their goals are in the near future with the day ending with the team taking them to the Bank to open bank accounts.
Pacific Settlement Support Services, a first of its kind service in New Zealand, was set up 3 months ago by 3 Samoan women, Zeprina Fale, Laura Keil-Hall and Mandy Siitia through a collaboration between their organisations. Zeprina and Mandy through Bluespur Charitable Trust and Laura through LKH Consulting. Laura also owns and runs The Pacific Business Hub.
Later they connected with Roberta Tiatia and Sheryl Silitia of Lototau Agency Immigration Services based in Samoa whom they now work closely with and as a partner in Samoa doing pre-migration work.
“We saw the need for this service based on our own shared migration experiences” says
“Statistics and anecdotal feedback from many of our Pacific people points to the lack of settlement support and a need for a service such as this” she continues
Mandy Siitia adds “For us it’s continuing the work that some of our Pacific Island families have been doing since the 1950s”
Laura Keil-Hall adds that she has been involved with talks and conversations with some government people and stakeholders in the past and tried to push for something like this but it was always an uphill battle. She says this is a crucial service that is needed by our people and yet no one wants to do something about it until she met Zeprina and Mandy who were equally passionate about this and now here they are.
What PSSS wants to do is to position our Pacific people for prosperity and give them the best
start possible with life in New Zealand.
Because it’s never been done before, the PSSS team are looking to flex and adjust according to the needs of the people, and the programme to be delivered in a way that is culturally relevant and spiritually sensitive.
The service is not funded so a fee is charged for the services.
PSSS acknowledges the support of the Community, New Zealand Police, Inland Revenue, the In-Hub businesses at the Pacific Business Hub and the Samoa Business Network.
To make contact with Pacific Settlement Support Services, you may visit their office in Auckland, 9 Sharkey Street, Manukau City or contact +64 218 8273 or +64 21 963 301.
Manukau, AUCKLAND - The Samoa Business Network (SBN) & AUT University South Campus presents PolyPolitics - The Business of Pacific, Auckland Mayoral Debate to be held on Thursday 26, September 2019 from 5PM-9PM.
SBN is glad to announce the candidates for this debate, attending are:
His Worship Hon. Phil Goff, current first term Auckland Mayor seeking re-election to the top job in the city after his retirement from Parliament and becoming Mayor last election cycle.
Businessman & engineer Mr. Craig Lord, seeking his first public office has made bold strides in capturing the attention of Aucklanders and rising in his support amongst Aucklanders.
Honourable John Tamihere, former government minister, media personality and business leader has been a force during the campaign for Mayor, as he seeks the top job.
This unique opportunity is spearheaded by the Samoan and Pacific Business Communities, seeking answers and clarity from candidates seeking the office of Auckland Mayor.
SBN Members and our community have identified the local election as an important and vital moment to hold candidates to account and to understand their vision and plans for Pacific.
Our moderators for the evening are Tauiliili Alpha Maiava and Tofilau Yolande Ah Chong, and they will no doubt keep these candidates on their toes as they cover all the important issues facing Pacific businesses, and Pacific communities in Auckland.
Join us and secure your seat(s) now. This event, without a doubt will be at capacity, so you don't want to miss out. You can purchase your tickets via this LINK!
All press attending the event must register with SBN. Please contact Board Secretary Laura Keil-Hall at firstname.lastname@example.org or at 09 218 8273 or 021 659 072
For further infromation, please contact Board Chair John Loau at email@example.com.
Event: PolyPolitics The Business of Pacific - Auckland Mayoral Debate
Date: Thursday 26, 2019
Location: AUT South Campus, 640 Great South Road, Manukau
Auckland, NZ - SBN proudly supported the efforts by the Samoa Barbarians Sports Club to fundraise for the Manu Samoa team with their fundraising dinner which was held last week at the Ellerslie Convention Centre.
In addition to purchasing tables and marketing of the fundraiser, SBN business members really turned out in force for the evening.
Special mention of SBN members and friends of the network who provided gifts for raffles and auctions on the night; Danika Cooper Jewellery, Ala'ileula Flowers & Things, Elemai's Therapeutic Clinic, Andreassend Design.
The SBN Board are very grateful to its members for supporting our call to support Manu Samoa on their Road to Japan, Rugby World Cup 2019 and playing a part in raising over $22,000 on the night!
SBN wishes Manu Samoa good luck in the Rugby World Cup 2019!
Manukau, Auckland NZ - Yesterday's Networking Evening was a roaring success! We want to acknowledge and make special mention of SamoaNZ Finance and Digicel who came on board as our sponsors for this event.
Our members are very thankful for your support and sponsorship.
We had over 40 people attending with our evening being MC'd by none other than Leaupepe Talai Lene from Digicel (also an SBN Board Member).
We heard from guest speakers and organisers of the Manu Samoa Fundraiser Sera Mika and her team from the Samoa Barbarians Sports Club.
Also covered on the evening was a quick report from SBN Board Chair Taliaoa John Loau.
Overall, it was a great night of businesses connecting, networking and sharing ways to help grow each other’s reach.
The event was held at the Network's headquarters based in The Pacific Business Hub on 9 Sharkey Street, Manukau City.
Event Sponsors: SamoaNZ Finance & Digicel
8/2/2019 0 Comments
Auckland, New Zealand - Business Link Pacific (BLP) officially launched the Business Link Pacific Portal today in Fiji, Vanuatu, Samoa and Papua New Guinea.
The Business Link Pacific Portal is an innovative online platform designed to connect quality business advisors with small and medium-sized growing businesses in the Pacific.
To mark the launch of the Portal, Business Link Pacific co-hosted four launch events, one in each country, which were open to small and medium sized businesses and free to attend.
Since the launch events were announced by Business Link Pacific on July 15, registrations have exceeded expectations and garnered local media coverage across all countries.
Over 800 small and medium sized businesses and business advisory service providers attended the four events and networking sessions, a clear indication of the level of interest in business advice in the Pacific region.
“We designed the BLP Portal to promote the high quality business services available in Pacific Island Countries, and to make the process of accessing expert business advice as streamlined as possible for growing Pacific businesses and the network of regional business advisors,” says Steve Knapp, Director of Business Link Pacific.
The multi-country launch event was a joint effort of Business Link Pacific and its In-country partners; Samoa Chamber of Commerce, the Vanuatu Chamber of Commerce and the Fiji Commerce and Employers Federation. Each launch event was officially opened by the respective New Zealand High Commissioner; in Vanuatu, His Excellency, Mr. Jonathan Schwass; in Fiji, His Excellency Mr. Jonathan Curr; in Samoa, His Excellency Dr. Trevor Matheson and in Papua New Guinea, His Excellency Mr. Philip Taula.
“The task of starting and developing a business is even harder in the Pacific, which has unique challenges around distance, isolation, problematic supply chains and small markets – and there isn’t necessarily a massive pool of support available,” says His Excellency, Mr. Jonathan Schwass, who officially opened the event in Vanuatu.
“The New Zealand Government considers that the Portal is an important addition to the valuable business support work that is carried out under the Business Link Pacific banner.”
A team of twenty plus Pacific Island-based marketing professionals took over the challenging task of organising the four events. As part of BLP’s Communication and Marketing team, they brought together twelve expert speakers from New Zealand, Australia and each hosting country, to talk about the challenges and opportunities for business development in the region, including connectivity, resilience, inclusion, technology, business compliance and the future of business in the Pacific Islands.
The main takeaways from the four events include the acknowledgment that connectivity and technology are bringing unprecedented opportunities to the region, alleviating some of its isolation issues.
These opportunities come with challenges that need the attention of both the private and governmental sectors.
The market for business services in the Pacific Islands is served by a high number of talented and experienced advisors that cater for small but growing businesses.
Business Link Pacific is a conveyor of the business advice market, facilitating the connection between service providers and new clients.
For small and medium sized businesses, the Portal offers a free Business Health Check that identifies business gaps and connects them to a wide range of service providers that are quality approved by BLP, services that can be accessed at a subsidised rate.
For Business Advisors, the Portal offers a marketing tool to engage and provide financial benefits to eligible clients, as well as organisational and business development support from regional consultants.
The Business Link Pacific Portal can be accessed via www.businesslinkpacific.com
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