Mai e Nima to bring eight-year-old ambassadors to NZ for Tongan Language Week

Tongan health campaign Mai e Nima will be bringing bite-sized Tongan celebrities eight year old Charlize Vete and Christopher Latu to New Zealand as ambassadors and faces of the Fun & Fresh Mai e Nima initiative for Tongan Language Week 2017.


In a show of support for Tongan Language Week, Chris and Charlize will visit pre-schools and primary schools to teach children Tongan words for fruit and vegetables – as well as share their Tongan experiences with Mai e Nima.


The health promotion program targets primary school children in combatting the growing non-communicable diseases (NCDs) and obesity problem in Tonga.


The obesity challenge is a global one, and is not just isolated to Tonga, with NCDs, principally cardiovascular diseases like cancer, diabetes and chronic respiratory diseases, the leading causes of death in Tongan men and women in New Zealand.


New Zealanders and especially the Tongan diaspora are encouraged to see the positive work undertaken by Mai e Nima in Tongan primary schools and Tongan Language Week is an opportune time to do this.


It is a week during which New Zealand puts Tongan heritage, language and culture in the spotlight.


Chair of the Mai e Nima Committee Minoru Nishi says it’s a way to build a unique bridge between showed for the betterment of all Tongan people.


“Wherever we are, we are still Tongans so there are no limits to where we should send the message of Mai e Nima”, he says.


Mai e Nima will create resource kits for schools – with flashcards in both English and Tongan of fruit & vegetables and activity sheets.


A videographer will travel with the team for the week, and record their travels and activities, and use that material to develop and enhance learning resources back in Tonga.


And the videos will also be used daily on social media, so that family and friends can follow their travels.


Mai e Nima are hope to form ‘Sister School’ relationships for satellite learning during their visit.


To round off the end of Tongan Language Week – Mai e Nima will be putting on a ‘Maketi Day’ in a Central Auckland location which will feature Tongan produce and foods – with Nishi Foods & Tinopai Farms to provide complimentary products for sampling.


There will also be a cook-off competition as well as have our Tongan sporting celebrities present to interact with visitors.


Keep an eye out for more information through their social media channels. 


CocoNewTonga Facebook


CocoNewTonga Twitter