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Pandemic in paradise - a year of COVID-19 in the Pacific

Woman getting a vaccination
Source: RNZ Pacific

Pacific people are no strangers to hardship.

Living on the frontlines of the climate crisis, thousands of miles from most places, its accepted daily that life is a struggle.

Most Pacific Islanders have had to rebuild their lives multiple times whether it be from cyclones, flooding, conflict, economic hardships or a debilitating tropical disease.

So when Covid-19 emerged as a global threat for the Pacific it was almost a case of take a number and stand in line.

As part of our ongoing March series on a year of the pandemic in paradise each week RNZ Pacific is reaching out to correspondents, health officials, businesspeople. civil society organisations and everyday people in the islands asking them to share their stories.

This past week we started with Pasifika here in New Zealand then looked at Papua New Guinea, The Marshall Islands and French Polynesia.


On 28 February 2020, New Zealand's first confirmed Covid-19 case was reported to the Ministry of Health.

There was no manual on how to combat this virus, yet New Zealanders rallied to the government's call to go hard and go early setting a global standard on managing the pandemic.

So many communities were behind this success.

This included Pasifika, who have been at the center of several community outbreaks, bravely taking on the challenge of helping to stop the virus.

Read the full article here.