Joe Luka has only one wish this Easter.
Speaking to the Village Voice team, he shared his wish for a Good Samaritan to donate to him some iron roofing.
For more than 10 years, he lived alone in a rundown shack in Tapatapao, with no water supply and electricity.
A grounds man, farmer and a family man all at once, he is seeking for assistance to improve his house.
His house needs so many repairs, but he only desires iron roofing. He understands that every family in Samoa is trying to cope with the expensive cost of living.
Mr. Luka shared hard work overcomes all obstacles in life.
He helps his parents and also his three brothers who attend school.
“The only thing that I need is iron roofing. This house that I live in is only suitable during fine weather.”
“When it rains, I would have to go and stay with my neighbour because my house leaks pretty bad and it feels like there is no roof over my head,” said the 40-year-old.
He explained: “I am from the village of Vaiusu but I have moved here because there is nobody to look after our land. I live here and work on the land but at the same time I am a grounds man.”
“All the money that I earn is given to my parents. Everything that they need in their house such as grocery shopping, cash power that is what the money is for.”
Despite his situation, Joe makes use of every resource that he could find for his home.
“I don’t have a family, meaning that I am not married and have any children. I live independently because my parents rely on me.”
“I have been here for a very long time and I have decided to stay here for good and take care of my parents with having to sell the crops that I have on the farm and the money I earn from being a grounds man.”
“We were almost late to claiming our land because another family was going to move here.”
“As long if I could get iron roofing then I would have no problems. I understand that everyone is struggling and seeking for assistance would be too much. To have iron roofing would allow me to rebuild another house that is more stable then what I am living in now.”
“The cost of living is expensive, but for me as long as there is tea and taro with coconut cream for dinner, then I am thankful because I have made it to the next day.”
“I earn $160 a week. The money that I earn is never enough. The prices of the products have increased. I have to give money to my parents but also the money that I would need to survive here.”
He also mentioned there is no water supply and that is why he does not have a proper toilet. He uses his neighbour’s toilet.
“I need a water tank and it is just ironic of how we live right next to water reservoirs but the water supply does not reach my own land.”
“I shower down the river and there are times during drought when it does not flow any more than I am left with no choice but cannot shower.”
Joe adds his power has been disconnected ever since Tropical Cyclone Gita because a breadfruit tree took his wire down that was connected to his neighbour’s house for power source.