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Pasifika Choice

What is Pasifika Choice?

Pasifika Choice is an obesity prevention programme focused on supporting our young Pacific children living in the Hutt Valley to develop healthy habits through their families and communities and to maintain these through life.


It is about working together with these families and communities such as church groups, schools, sports, educators and others to create opportunities for children to be active and have access to good nutrition.


It is also about getting the next generation of Pacific children healthy and thriving through active lifestyles and eating well to prevent obesity and other chronic diseases.

Follow this link to a video for more information about Pasifika Choice.


The project’s ambassador is former All Black Rodney. ‘‘I did not hesitate to give my support and come on board as an ambassador for Pasifika Choice because as a parent I can identify with what the project is trying to achieve’’.

According to Rodney: ‘‘Small and simple changes to a family’s lifestyle can greatly assist in halting the growing incidence of obesity in children. Things like limiting access to fizzy drinks and candy in the house, and being active together as a family even if you start with a 10-minute walk”.


Pasifika Choice Annual Touch Tournament


Pacific Health Service holds an annual Touch Tournament as part of the Pasifika Choice project. The tournament is a fun family orientated event supported by various health providers. This tournament has been held over 4 years and continues to be very popular with many changes reported by families at a family level being implemented in terms of exercise and nutrition.


The tournament is structured in a way that the whole family can participate. The rules are that each team must field at least one over 40, one under 12, and two females at all times ensuring whole family participation.


The tournaments have been very successful with over 100 teams participating in total over 4 tournaments.


For more information, please contact Pacific Health Services Hutt Valley.


Here are some photos of previous years’ events!



Pasifika Choice Youth Leadership Programme


One of the key elements in any programme is sustainability. The Pasifika Choice Youth Leadership Programme is our investment in training up the next set of health promoters within our Pacific communities.





We have been working together with the Wainuiomata Valley Church of the Nazarene to make their church a healthy environment for all their families. The church has officially gone ‘fizz free’ meaning they have eliminated all soft drinks from any of their church gatherings! Below are some photos of the different exercise, cooking, and cultural trainings we have run with them.


In addition, the Valley Church of the Nazarene are now the Fruit and Vegetable Co-op in Wainuiomata. Pasifika Choice project connected this church with Regional Public Health and helped establish the Fruit and Vegetable Co-op that can accessed by the Wainuiomata community.





In cohort two, we worked in partnership with kids on F.O.O.T before/after school and on holiday programmes. We helped make healthy changes to the way they run their programmes. Since we have worked with this amazing group they have changed their reward system where they reward children with healthy alternatives instead sweet treats.




Pasifika Choice officially finished at the end of June 2017. Thank you to everyone who has been a part of this life changing programme.

Rodney So'oialo, Ambassador
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Candice Apelu
Project Manager

Candice Apelu leads the current Pasefika Choice Project on behalf of the Pacific Health Hutt Valley, Te Awakairangi Network and Family Centre partners.  The Project team brings healthy living strategies to our Pacific families through focusing on the needs of our children ages 3 to 11 years, their families and their communities.  Candice brings her years of management expertise and healthy living philosophy to lead the project team.

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