The Board and staff of The Fono Trust congratulate CEO Fiugalu Tevita Funaki, who has been appointed as a Member of the New Zealand Order of Merit in the New Year Honours 2024. The honour is in recognition of his services to Pacific health.
‘I am humbled to be invited to join those Pacific people who have earned an honour this year and in the past,’ Funaki declares. ‘I have been fortunate to be welcomed as a voice for Pacific health and wellbeing,’ he added. Funaki says the honour reflects on those who have given him the opportunities.
Funaki has been CEO of The Fono Trust since 2010. Before joining The Fono Trust, Funaki was the Pacific Health Manager for ProCare Health Ltd and the National Pasifika Liaison Advisor for Massey University.
Funaki also contributes to Pacific health in a wide range of advisory positions. He is Chairman of ProCare’s Health (PHO) Limited Board, the Ministry of Social Development Pacific Reference Group and the Oceania Career Academy. Funaki is also a member of Te Whatu Ora’s Health Services Committee, the Police Commissioner National Pacific Forum and the Waitematā District Commander Pacific Advisory Group.
Funaki acknowledges those who he says ‘have earned this honour for me’. He singles out his wife, Noa, children, parents and siblings for their unwavering support. He also acknowledges his colleagues at the governance organisations he is involved with and the Pacific communities of Auckland.
Finally, Funaki salutes the Board and his colleagues at The Fono Trust. ‘Special thanks go to my coworkers at The Fono Trust and its funders who saw the power of innovation in Pacific health and backed us,’ he says. Funaki adds that this has allowed the Pacific way to make a difference in health, wellbeing, services and education.
‘The work goes on, and I hope Pacific peoples feel they can share this honour with me,’ Funaki concludes.
Nacanieli Yalimaiwai, Chair of The Fono Trust, commented, ‘I take immense pride in offering my heartfelt congratulations to our CEO, Fiugalu Tevita Funaki, for the honour of being appointed as a Member of the New Zealand Order of Merit by His Majesty The King.’ He says that this recognition is a testament to Funaki’s dedication, exceptional leadership, and commitment to the health and wellbeing of Pacific communities.
Yalimaiwai reports that under Funaki’s guidance, The Fono Trust has achieved significant progress in delivering high-quality health and social services and empowering individuals in need. He continues that his tireless efforts have positively impacted countless lives, making this recognition truly well-deserved.
‘On behalf of the Board and the wider Fono family, I want to express our deepest gratitude for this honour and extend our congratulations to Funaki for his outstanding leadership,’ Yalimaiwai declares.
He adds that The Fono Trust is privileged to have him at the helm. ‘We are confident that, together, we will continue to achieve great success and make a significant impact in our collective mission to enhance the health and wellbeing of our people,’ says Yalimaiwai.