Waka Hourua

Mika Haka Foundation

Mika Haka Foundation

This Waka Hourua initiative, the Aroha Project, was a response to bullying, alienation and suicide risk among Māori and Pacific youth with a focus on LGBTQQ youth. Key messaging presented is by strong LGBTQQ Māori and Pacific and non Queer characters over a 6 episode webseries. The Aroha Project used humour, strong characters and popular youth culture including pop-music, street dance and spokenword throughout the series to connect with its audience . A music project and several live events engaged and gained responses from our audience. The response series was created with young people. 

The Aroha Project is in three parts: 

1.         Webseries/transmedia multi-media project - Online viewing, sharing and discussing, using all social media channels.

2.         Four live events - Invitations to youth to engage with the multi-media project.

3.         Community response - Places for young people to go for special information, help and safety.     

The project drew on the support, inclusion and collaboration of teams of talented writers and performing artists, and organisations already working with youth, indigenous and LGBTQQ communities. It created tools and resources that can assist communities throughout New Zealand to implement their own suicide prevention initiatives and develop appropriate suicide prevention and postvention approaches for Pacific and Māori.

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