The Tonga Leitis’ Association has a long and complex history.
It is a history of survival; a history that has been filled with diverse and contesting ways of understanding, filled with contradictions, categorisation, labelling and marginalisation.
This history has situated Leitis outside the ‘normal’ ‘Anga FakaTonga’ (Tongan ways) mainly because their distinctive behaviours are perceived as falling outside the ‘Anga FakaTonga’ definition of acceptable behaviours and attitude.
However, since its establishment, the TLA has been committed to encouraging Tonga and Tongans to see Leitis in a different way and acknowledging their positive contributions to Tongan civil society through their support of business, family and the cultural life of Tonga.
The TLA has also become a key part of the HIV response in Tonga.
TLA has supported Leitis into professional training and jobs. TLA has also been committed to international participation in a range of ways, including encouraging members to take up scholarship opportunities to study overseas.