National | Pacific

NZQA gives Pacific family violence programme accreditation

The New Zealand Qualifications Authority (NZQA) has approved the first Pacific qualification to advance the cultural capability of family violence practitioners.

The new qualification introduces the only level six micro-credential for frontline and social workers.

The NZQA accreditation validates the Nga Vaka o Kāiga Tapu programme, which has been helping Pacific communities since 2010.

Programme cultural lead Fa’amatuainu Tino Pereira said with the NZQA accreditation,the mainstream recognised the important role Pacific communities played in providing solutions that came from within communities themselves.

“As Pasefika wisdom shows, ‘E fofo e le alamea le alamea’ - the toxic fish has its own antidote,” Fa’amatuainu said. “This reflects a victory for Pacific communities who developed the Nga Vaka framework in response to addressing family violence more than 10 years ago.”

It was created by The Cause Collective in partnership with Pacific community facilitators and New Zealand Academic Learning Institute (NZALI), making it a community-led and community-informed project.

The training programme use eight islands’ cultural frameworks, those of Cook Islands, Fiji, Kiribati, Niue, Samoa, Tokelau, Tonga and Tuvalu,to minimise and eliminate family violence among Pacific families.

Tino Pereira said a culturally led solution to preventing and stopping family violence must meet rigorous academic standards when delivering high-quality training for practitioners, employers and communities.

“It ensures practitioners are equipped with the necessary skills and knowledge to engage effectively with Pacific families while adhering to national standards for education and training.”

The new 20-credit qualification will be available from October 2024 and will be listed on the NZQA website.