Coronavirus: How former world discus champion Beatrice Faumuina is helping Pasifika businesses amid COVID-19 crisis

Pasifika businesses are being severely impacted by COVID-19, but the Pacific Business Trust says they've been slow to ask for help.

A month ago, Saia Latu's business - a deconstruction and salvaging business, owned and staffed by Pasifika - was in full swing.

During lockdown, there's not a single machine working.

"[It's] emotional looking at it, because all the work that we’ve done is coming to halt," he told The Project.

Latu admits Pacific businesses don't like to ask for help.

"What we have to realise is this isn't a handout but a hand up - about how agencies and Government can help us recover."

Former world champion discus thrower Beatrice Faumuina now works for the Pacific Business Trust - one of many organisations offering businesses like Latu's help during this crisis.

"What we do is offer workshops, and a network of helpers [and] other specialists like lawyers, taxation [and] accounting," Faumuina said. "The beauty about this service is it's free."

Faumuina told The Project's Patrick Gower people should ask for help at a time like this.

"Organisations like us and many others around NZ are willing to help.

"Lean on one another, ask us those questions, put them out there... ask the awkward ones as well."

Pasifika businesses anywhere in New Zealand can get in touch with the Pacific Business Trust, or go to the Government’s COVID-19 website and search for Pacific Peoples.

Watch the full story above.