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PMA Nurse reflects on Rotuman language Week and International Nurses Day 2022
Updates / Community , 12 May 22
This week is Rotuman Language Week and it coincides with International Nurses Day, which is fitting for Rotuman Nurse and Pasifika Medical Association (PMA) member, Taknoa Gaunavou, who credits her Rotuman culture for leading her to a profession in nursing.

Mrs Gaunavou is proud to be Rotuman and acknowledges faith as an important part of her identity.

“I love our name itself; Rotu means church and ma means faith. Church and faith are our foundation. Growing up we’ve been taught to live a life of servanthood, not just at home, but as a steppingstone to serving our community as well.”

She explains that her values of faith and service played an important role in her becoming a nurse.

“After coming back from mission school and praying about it, I felt called to serve in my family and my community. After completing my studies to become a nurse, I was offered a job at Middlemore Hospital, where I’ve been working for five years. 

As a Rotuman, having God as my foundation, acts of service are naturally rooted in me. I’m so thankful that I’m able to serve the community, talanoa, encourage and uplift people in this profession.”

She says International Nurses Day is an opportunity to acknowledge those who have paved the way for nurses today.

“We work in this role because we love it and we’re here to serve. I’m standing on the shoulders of others who have come before me and nurses who paved the way for us. It’s still a work in progress but we’ve come a long way.”

As we acknowledge the work and efforts of nurses all around the world, Mrs Gaunavou offers a word of encouragement in the Rotuman language.

“Ma tape’ma ‘omus tafa kop la puạlpuạl ‘e muạ ‘on famori, la iris la räe se ‘omus garue lelei, ma a’kölör’ạkia ‘omus Ö’fāat täe ‘e lạgi.

This is a verse from the bible which talks about how God spoke light first. As nurses, we are that beacon and that light during tough times for people who need support. Whether it be applying someone’s dressing or helping with their medication, we can be that light through talanoa for anyone needing comfort or hope.”


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Date: Thursday 12 May 2022