The aumaga (untitled men) is the backbone of every village.
Ask Fau Loto of Salesatele Falealili and he will tell you.
Speaking to the Village Voice yesterday, the 28-year-old emphasized the role of the aumaga.
“To be a part of this community, I have learned that this is not just a title because it comes with a whole lot of responsibility for every single day,” Fau said.
“I’m thankful that this committee is under the governance of the village because it’s a way for us to learn from their level of authority and also act in ways that helps in upholding our village’s reputation.”
He added: “I believe that with everything that we are doing right now; as our duties, as our responsibilities is our way to serve our families now and the ones we will have in the future.”
Fau told Village Voice that this is something that differentiates untitled men in the town areas and rural villages.
“Some may think that this is not true but one needs to see it to believe it right? For us here in the village, chiefs expect more from us, it’s a role where sometimes you get to say that it’s too demanding but it’s all worth it because it’s not for the betterment of just one person but for the whole village.”
“And I know it’s hard to believe but at my age, sometimes I feel like I’m in my youth again when we are being told of what to do but we’re all used to it because in a way, it motivates us to perform in the best way we can to make this village a better place.”
“We work every day of the week; we work the lands, we work in our plantations so we can feed our families, we are also responsible for the cleaning up of the concrete water tank.”
“We try to make a living out of our crops as well sometimes so we can help out with village and church obligations.”
“When I think about the life that I have as an untitled man, it adds great meaning and value to my life as a person so that when I get older, I hold a sense of responsibility when I get to have a family of my own.
“This role will teach you many great things; it’s all about knowing and understanding of what it means to serve others, to work for others especially developing my character whether it’s learning how to walk, how to talk, how you know your own culture and anything else for that matters.”
“This is the beginning of big things in life.”