Pasifika Wayfinders celebrates the leadership of our Pasifika youth through honoring their traditional roles as Wayfinders. Like our Oceanian ancestors, instead of wayfinding through the Ocean to find our Island homes or to return home, our Pasifika youth are supporting our Pasifika Diaspora in wayfinding through societal challenges by creating spaces for their peers to find belonging and to strengthen their voices within the communities they live in. Pasifika Wayfinders centers the leadership of our Pasifika youth through peer advocacy and speaking truth to power. From advocating to end youth homelessness and youth detention, to creating wellness spaces to address mental health challenges experienced by their peers, Pasifika Wayfinders are actively working to improve the well-being of Pasifika youth in the state of Washington through the Pasifika Youth Council and other Pasifika youth-driven will continue to rise!
Our Pasifika Wayfinders in partnership are committed to learning the art of farming to embody what it means for us as Pasifika to reconnect to the soil, to our farming roots and also to understand the importance of understanding our food sources, indigenous stewardship of land, and celebrating the harvest of their farming efforts.
We have access to a half acre in Enumclaw from the Ayeko Farms to train our young Wayfinders in the traditions of reconnecting to soil, our first mother and to learn what farming looks like with the continental seasons. So far, we have been growing squash, tomatoes, garlic, peppers, watermelon, cilantro and zuchini. Our harvest is used to make soup and other dishes for our youth and elder programming at the PICA-WA office. Pictured on the left is our farmer JR Kiona who harvested our first season of garlic that we planted last Fall.
If you are interested in our Pasifika Sovereignty Farm work, please feel free to reach out to us. We can always use more farmers who can tend to our farm by pulling the weeds and making sure our plants are well-watered.
Pasifika Wayfinders follow the abolitionist traditions of Oceanians that do not believe cages are a humane way to restore justice when communities have experienced harm. Healing protocol and traditions are core to the values of Pasifika – our communities have always had the abilities to heal ourselves. “E fofo le alamea, alamea.”
Our Wayfinders are committed to stand up for our Pasifika members are targets of the policing and prison systems and who are incarcerated at extremely high rates similar to our other Black and Brown siblings. While Pasifika is not always the target, our communities suffer from the collateral damages of white supremacist culture and power that perpetuates anti-Black and anti-Indigenous sentiment and policies.
Our Pasifika Wayfinders along with other BIPOC youth abolitionists are working collaborative to find alternatives to caging our youth and instead find healing solutions rooted in communities who are most impacted by the criminal justice, policing and prison systems.
It is important for the Pasifika Youth to grow their voices and have a platform to be heard. The mission of the Youth Council is to empower young Pasifika minds, learn about injustices impacting youth of color and gain the organizing skills to change our world for the better. This council is a platform for our Pasifika young people to practice leadership through advocacy, organizing, and collaboration. All Pasifika youths (ages 15-20) in the state of Washington are encouraged to apply. The Wayfinders meet in person every Friday at 4pm at the PICA-WA office in Federal Way.
Last but not least, our Wayfinders Youth Organizers are committed to the restoration of our languages and cultural traditions through the learning and teaching of Pasifika performance arts. They do this through peer to peer learning but also leaning into the wisdom of cultural practitioners.
Currently, our Pasifika Wayfinders teach the art of Tongan Ta’uolunga, Fijian Meke, Marshallese Action Dances along with Samoan siva, taualuga and sasa. Our Pasifika Wayfinders have been performing throughout the Northwest region and have been a part of not just our local Pasifika festivals, but also in celebrating the milestones of their Wayfinder peers such as graduation, or entering college/military or a vocational program after their high school career. Dance practices currently take place at the PICA-WA main office in Federal Way Washington. If you would like to participate, please reach out and ask for the Pasifika Wayfinders application.