Historically the discipline of psychology has had little Pacific presence or contribution.
Over the last five-ten years there has been a growth of emerging Pacific professionals specialising in various areas within psychology, in various geographical locations across the nation.
In 2005 a small group of Pasifika psychologists began to meet to discuss and share ideas through informal meetings and an email Fono. The Pacific Psychology Fono sprung out of a need to support the few Pasifika psychologists practising in New Zealand. It became clear that we needed to provide a pathway for others through support and a mentoring process.
People in the Fono are committed to this cause because of our own individual journeys of struggle and success. We believe in the influential power of collective support and know this has not been done before with psychologists.
A newly-formed critical mass of Pacific psychologists came together to form Pasifikology, the Pacific Psychology Fono, with a shared vision of growing the Pacific psychologist workforce, sharing knowledge and information, and ensuring that psychology is relevant for Pacific people in New Zealand.
The Pacific Psychology Fono is comprised of Pasifika psychologists, graduates and students of psychology. The Fono reflects our diversity through our different psychological training and backgrounds. However, our major strengths are based around our inherent cultural connections with each other, which sets us apart from our non-Pasifika psychologists, these include our cultural models, humour, cultural understanding, shared values, and ease of connection and engagement with our people.
It is this that gives life and meaning to our work as Pasifika psychologists.