Trying to help my family

By Vatapuia Maiava and Ilia L Likou ,

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HELPING OUT HIS FAMILY: Keniseli Pitolua, 15, from the village of Aleisa.

HELPING OUT HIS FAMILY: Keniseli Pitolua, 15, from the village of Aleisa.

As many children around Samoa was enjoying their White Sunday public holiday, Keniseli Pitolua, from the village of Aleisa was hard at work trying to do his part in the family.

Aged 15, the young boy was trying to sell his baskets of pawpaw to earn a bit of extra transport money for the upcoming school week.

FRESH FRUIT AND VEGETABLES: Baskets of Pawpaw and pumpkin Keniseli is trying to sell to help his family.

FRESH FRUIT AND VEGETABLES: Baskets of Pawpaw and pumpkin Keniseli is trying to sell to help his family.

“We managed to make $40 last week for the family,” he told the Village Voice.

“When my father left, my mom started working our plantation to earn a bit of money and we are helping her sell the produce out here.

“My older brother works but the money isn’t enough. He makes only $100 a week.”

With his family earning a maximum of $100 a week from his brother’s job, Keniseli said that he wants to make an effort to help his mother.

“There are nine of us children,” he said.

“We sell baskets of pawpaw for $10 a basket. We just started recently and  we have been trying to sell these bags since Sunday.

FRESH FRUIT AND VEGETABLES: Baskets of Pawpaw and pumpkin Keniseli is trying to sell to help his family.
FRESH FRUIT AND VEGETABLES: Baskets of Pawpaw and pumpkin Keniseli is trying to sell to help his family.

“We used last week’s money to buy some food for White Sunday. We just try and do our part to make things a little easier for mom.

“The $100 my brother makes a week and the money we get from selling these baskets is all we have to take care of the family.”

Keniseli was very thankful to his church for helping make his White Sunday a little more cheerful.

“We do get help, yesterday for White Sunday our Assembly of God congregation in Aleisa helped us,” he said.

“They gave me and my other siblings some food and clothes for our White Sunday and we are grateful. The gifts and the fact that some people are helping me and my siblings gave us so much joy.”

As for future plans, Keniseli said he wants to be a farmer when he grows up.

“I am currently in Aleisa Primary,” he said.

“When I grow up I will be happy with whatever my future is but my preference lies in being a farmer. If that’s not my future then I will go with whatever.

“Selling these baskets is my main priority today because I want to earn a bit of transport money for my mother and my younger siblings for tomorrow.

“We don’t have much in our family and that’s why these pawpaw baskets are very useful for us. Another problem we face is that we don’t have a water pipe.

“We would go around looking for places to fill our buckets for the family to use. 

“That’s our life out here.”

© Samoa Observer 2016

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