Pasifika family cook-off at Ara

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14 Jul 2017

A Pasifika family cooking event today (Friday 14 July) is the first initiative at Ara Institute of Canterbury to give Pasifika students and their whanau a friendly introduction to the tertiary environment, following the recent launch of the Ara Pasifika Strategy.

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Pasifika teens and their family were invited to a free cooking lesson and lunch from 9am – midday. They learned about study pathways for cookery while enjoying a delicious menu of pork belly with apples, spiced chicken with rice, roast pumpkin salad with coconut and tomatoes, kumara salad with Ara honey and oranges, and fresh pineapple pie with meringue.

“We are reaching out for more ways to connect with Pasifika parents, families and communities,” Director Student Services at Ara, John West said. “This is a fun and engaging event that demonstrates our commitment to being an inclusive and welcoming place for all learners.”

“We find that once people come in and meet our tutors, Ara becomes a familiar place and that can help students to know what is available for them and to take the next step to enrol in a programme.”

The Pasifika strategy is designed to engage Pasifika in tertiary education and support their success through to completion of qualifications, especially through to achieving higher level qualifications. It addresses the inequity of outcomes that are reflected in the current levels of achievement.

The vision of the strategy is to support Pasifika students to contribute to the social, cultural and economic wellbeing of Aotearoa New Zealand. One of the suggestions for achieving the vision is to integrate Pasifika values, such as the importance of family and community.

Following the shared lunch event, Ara is hosting an Afternoon Session from 2-4pm with afternoon tea, a department tour and course information for community leaders, church ministers, teachers, government department staff and other influencers.

Read more: Pasifika Strategy launch