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Exploring the role of Tongan faith leaders in influencing wellbeing

30 months
Approved budget:
Ms Rubinstine Manukia
Dr Margaret Williams
Professor Janis Paterson
Health issue:
Wellbeing (autonomy self-determination)
Proposal type:
Pacific Health PhD Scholarship
Lay summary
The proposed doctoral study will investigate the role of faith leaders in influencing the wellbeing of Tongan people living in Aotearoa. There is no specific evidence describing the role of faith leaders in the lives of Tongan people. A Pacific worldview paradigm and the key research ethics and values, expressed and practiced by Tongan people, will be used to engage with Tongan people (Vaioleti, 2006). The research design will be a qualitative research methodology, namely phenomenology, informed by a Talanoa research approach that is inclusive of Pacific knowledge, values and belief systems (Vaioleti, 1999-2003). Within the Talanoa approach, components of the Kakala research framework will be integrated. This framework leverages from the Talanoa research approach in that it allows the researcher to access and capture the authenticity of Tongan traditional knowledge systems in its intended form, structure and processes. (Helu-Thaman, 1997).