1 Jun 2011

NZ Samoan Language Week celebrations begin today

6:49 am on 1 June 2011

Celebrations for Samoan Language Week in New Zealand officially begin today.

The theme is "Samoa Ola: Samoa Active" focusing upon language, sport and healthy living.

There are over 130,000 Samoan New Zealanders in New Zealand, the fourth largest ethnic community after European, Maori and Chinese.

The Samoan language is the third most commonly spoken language in New Zealand after English and Māori.

The chairman of Auckland City's Pacific People Advisory Panel, Reverend Uesifili Unasa, says organising different events for Samoa language Week every year is a priority.

"The ongoing work means its a reminder all the time to all of us as Samoan speakers, and Samoan people and indeed the whole Pacific community that what are valuable and what are treasures in our communities require constant work, and input and attention."

Different Samoa language events are taking place nationwide, as well as in Australia, Hawaii, and the United States.