Samoa Stationery and Books (S.S.A.B.) held its 2018 retreat at the St. Therese Samoa Retreat & Accommodation last week Friday.
The event included a competition among the staff members with the grand price of $5,400.
The competition was divided into three categories; Mega Challenge Category, MTV’s and the fa’aluma or the cheer up competition.
Israel team won all three categories, claiming the $5,400 prize.
In an interview with the leader of the Israel team, Nancy Vito, she said putting together the team was a challenge.
“To be honest with you it was difficult in the beginning because people were different, some were older and some were young, so organizing it was a challenge,” she told the Samoa Observer.
“But one thing I really emphasized to my team was unity and I told them that we never win this competition if we weren’t united and we always start and end with prayer.”
“I said to them that Israel is God’s chosen nation and we have to believe in God’s favor over our team and even though we were small in numbers.”
She added most of her team members didn’t really know how to dance.
“Some of my team members were weak hearted in the beginning because many of us don’t really know how to dance unlike other teams there were some strong people, they were gifted in dancing so it was easy for them,” she said.
“To me as a leader for the Israel team, I really rely on God to help me and we were fasting as well and I strongly believe if we weren’t united we wouldn’t have won.”
She acknowledged one of her team members who helped her in putting together their performance.
“I also want to acknowledge Titi Taulapapa in organizing everything for as well as everyone in the team for all their hard work,” she said.
“But all glory to God because if it wasn’t for His help, we wouldn’t be able to win the competition.”
“We started practicing before Mother’s Day and it was challenging at first and we practiced three to four times a week for about three-four hours starting from basic, so we believe that all our hard work has been paid off.”
“For our winning prize, we tithe 10 percent of our winning prize because I believe if it wasn’t for God we wouldn’t win and when we got the winning prize I automatically told them and the team agreed because they knew that if it wasn’t for God we wouldn’t get the grand prize.”
“We are honored to have won the competition.”
Owner of S.S.A.B. Tofilau Fiti Leung Wai said the retreat was for Savaii and Upolu branch.
“It was huge success in a sense that we had done a lot of work to assess how we can improve our business and our service in Samoa but in addition to that we were able to socialise and also have our competition,” she said.
“One of the reasons I decided to do this is to encourage unity and promote solidarity within S.S.A.B. as a whole.”
“So in preparation, there were seven teams that were divided for the Mega Challenge and we picked managers to lead the team.”
“We mixed all the division to encourage unity and to be able to work together. We had a programme for Saturday too but we had to cancel it because we had to go and open the shop.”
“More than $16,000 was spent for the competition and there were more than 100 employees of S.S.A.B. that were at the retreat.”
“The event was just for S.S.A.B. Savaii and Upolu not including American Samoa and New Zealand because it’s very hard to bring everyone together because of costs, but I have encouraged S.S.A.B. Pago and New Zealand to have their own retreat in the future.”
“All teams were well prepared and one thing that I have actually built and created for S.S.A.B. is an enabling environment where it allows people to feel free and bring out their potential and talents in every aspect.”