21 Jan 2008

Major Tonga education expo held in Auckland

11:06 am on 21 January 2008

Around a thousand people were at the Tonga Education Expo in Mangere in Auckland on Saturday where there was an emphasis on targetting and interacting with parents.

The Vahefonua Tonga Training Expo is in it's second year, with the Prime Minister Helen Clark there to officialy open it this year.

The expo was hosted by the Vahefonua Methodist church, with more than 20 stalls offering information on trade, apprenticeships and tertiary education.

One of the main organisors, Kalolo Fihaki says they're tapping into the fact that generally Pacific parents decide for their children what to study.

He says it's important that they're properly informed in a friendly, grass-roots environment.

"We've got about 70 volunteers, with these volunteers - they understand what the parents should understand and not only that, what their peers should understand. They're also here to translate the language to the parents who don't communicate English very well with the stall holders. Parents will be assigned with volunteers to do the translation."