Taking care of much with little

By Vatapuia Maiava and Deidre Fanene ,

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TOO MUCH TO DO WITH THE LITTLE THAT WE HAVE: Manogi Faasavalu, 50, from the village of Papauta

TOO MUCH TO DO WITH THE LITTLE THAT WE HAVE: Manogi Faasavalu, 50, from the village of Papauta

God has blessed Samoans with fruits of the land to provide money for our families.

So says Manogi Faasavalu, from the village of Papauta.

Although life is not a walk in the park for her, she is contented with whatever they make.

She admits that her family does struggle to make ends meet but she understands the value of her hard work.

“The reason I do this is obvious, I work hard to get money for the family,” Manogi told the Village Voice.

“I have children to take care of and the money I make goes to paying their schooling expenses. I also work hard to deal with the very high cost of living we are currently experiencing.

“I admit that my family is struggling and we have to bring these to sell so that we can make some money to survive on.”

Making just a little over $100 a week, Manogi says it’s not enough. The hardworking mother is constantly trying to make whatever she makes stretch as much as possible.

Manogi Faasavalu’s stall she uses to earn for her family.
Manogi Faasavalu’s stall she uses to earn for her family.

“If sales are great then I am able to make a little over $100 a week,” she said.

“On a very good day, I am able to make about $30 and then other days I don’t make that much. I have to make that money stretch to cover as many things as possible for my family.”

Even with two children holding steady jobs, Manogi says that the high cost of living makes all the money they earn nowhere near enough for everything they need.

But no matter how much they struggle, the family’s one and only priority is the children.

“Some families make enough to live on but for my family, we struggle,” Manogi said.

“We sometimes don’t have enough for all our needs and sometimes we do. But our main priority is the children’s schooling.

“I have two children who are currently holding jobs but to be honest, their pay isn’t enough. We have many things we need money for and the little we make is just not enough.

“But we still try our best to make it work.”

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