Nga Vaka o Kāiga Tapu (Nga Vaka) is a collaboration between eight Pacific ethnic communities, The Cause Collective and Government through the Ministry of Social Development. The Nga Vaka o Kaiga Tapu conceptual frameworks are the centrepiece of the Government’s Pasifika Proud initiative which aims to prevent family violence among Pacific communities.
Nga Vaka started over 10 years ago as a community response using culture as the platform for Pacific communities to take responsibility for leading their own action to prevent and stop violence in Pacific families.
The eight ethnic Pacific communities include: Cook Islands, Fijian, Kiribati, Niuean, Samoan, Tokelauan, Tongan, Tuvaluan communities.
Nga Vaka o Kāiga Tapu means ‘The Sailing Vessels of Sacred Families’. The title is composed of words that have the same, or similar, meanings in two or more languages of the eight Pacific communities represented in the collaborative.
Vaka are the ethical compasses that direct and orientate individuals towards honouring human relationships in families, and in communities of identity and belonging.
Kāiga are past and living families inscribed in genealogies. Through genealogies, places of belonging, the designations of roles, and obligations to family are understood. How we live as kāiga today is the heritage that we leave for tomorrow’s generations.
Reciprocity, respect, genealogy, observance of tapu relationships, language and belonging are concepts that are shared across the eight ethnic specific communities as elements that protect and strengthen family and individual wellbeing.
Nga Vaka o Kaiga Tapu provides our communities with a way to look to our past and to the heart of our cultures, to help us navigate some of the challenges we face in our families today.
The eight Nga Vaka o Kaiga Tapu frameworks are built on key cultural concepts that protect and strengthen wellbeing by honouring and restoring our sacred relationships to bring about strong and vibrant Pacific families.
Nga Vaka recognises that Pacific peoples themselves hold the answers to addressing violence by drawing on our indigenous knowledge systems, and that this knowledge can be used for application by our families living in today’s world.
The frameworks are underpinned by the core beliefs and values systems that are unique to each of the eight ethnic groups and demonstrate the commonalities across each ethnic group. It is the timeless values which underpin the Frameworks that shows our traditional duty of care for one another is as relevant today as it was to our ancestors.