“Io, Keimami Leqataka Vakalevu Na Vei Gauna Mai Muri” (“We are Worried About the Future Generation”): Experiences of Eco-Grief in Rural Indigenous Fijians


  • Amy D. Lykins Orcid
  • Suzanne Cosh Orcid
  • Patrick D. Nunn Orcid
  • Roselyn Kumar Orcid
  • Cassandra Sundaraja Orcid


The impacts of climate change are particularly strong in Pacific Small Island Developing States. However, empirical data on mental health and well-being in the context of climate change and climate anxiety in the region remains limited. The aim of this research was to understand the emotional experiences of climate change and its impact on well-being in rural Fiji. Seventy-one Indigenous and traditional Fijian adults from seven rural villages were interviewed. Data were analyzed using an inductive latent thematic analysis. Evident was the experience of ecological grief among Indigenous and traditional Fijians. In particular, grief experiences were related to losses of species and resources, which impacted ways of life and led to the loss of culture, traditions, and customs. Anticipatory grief was also evident, relating to the loss of lifestyle for future generations, and the loss of traditional and ancestral homes through potential migration. Results provide new data from the Global South and contribute to the limited exploration of mental health in relation to climate change in the Pacific region. The results highlight the experience of ecological grief among Pacific Islanders, and underscore the significance of culture loss due to climate change and anticipatory grief.