Here are some of the comments received from the 2008 Gathering:
- Need more time for the panels, and for tea & lunch breaks
- Could have organized evening meals for visitors from overseas & out of state
- Find ways to share presentations at this Gathering with others who were not at this first Talanoa Gathering(documentation & publication)
- Find ways to influence our people & society
- Consider table groups so that every participant have a chance to "touch, pause, engage" one another
- Have a 2nd Gen or Youthy kenote speaker the next time around
- Have Talanoa Mentors to journey, reflect, process, debrief and unwind with participants during the time of the Talanoa Gathering
- Include program & events for children
- Continue to wrestle with the issue of identity
- Broaden the scope of presenters and presentations in order to be more interdiscipinary
- Encourage looking beyond "PI borders" so that we can relate who we are and how we think to who others are and how they think, without falling into trap of "us vs. them"
- As we are dipping into the ocean of Talanoa, we need also to relate what we are doing and talanoaring (lets add a new word to the vocab!) to what other Pacific academics (Hau'ofa, Thaman, Wendt et al.) have been doing
- Keep 2nd Gen & women on the agenda
- Invite 1st Gen to learn the ABC+D of Talanoa Oceania, which means learning to know when it is appropriate to "stepAside" and "sitBack" and "stayCalm" and "shutDown"
- Attend to concerns of Pacific Islanders whose roots trace back to India, Taiwan, China, Africa, Europe and beyond
- It is important for people to register so that we can keep track of who attends (and so that we do not waste food when it comes to meal times)
- It is also important to encourage people to make presentations: both those who presented at this 2008 Gathering but also to encourage new presenters for future Gatherings
- It would be good to include interstate delegations as the issues are Australia-wide and the idea of "Pasefika Australia" should be claimed by all communities
Observations from the kitchen:
- It was interesting to see participants "dressing down" as the Gathering proceeded; that suggests that they were comfortable with one another
- It was also interesting that on Day 3, there were many volunteers around the sink wanting to help with the dishes; what does this suggest?
- Note that some most interesting conversations do occur in the kitchen and most people are willing to assist if needed
If you have other comments, please email me and i will add those ...