At the mercy of nature

By Nefertiti Matatia ,

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LIFE IS CHALLENGING: Ana Sio and her children at their home.

LIFE IS CHALLENGING: Ana Sio and her children at their home. (Photo: Misiona Simo)

The dilapidated condition of their house means they are always at the mercy of the forces of nature.

Rusty iron roofing and the use of bed sheets to block out the rain are some of the challenges that Ana Sio from Tiavi faces with her children.

The mother of five said she worries for her children and fears for their lives, mindful that the shack that they call home remains vulnerable. 

“Whenever there are strong winds, our house usually shakes. It is also really cold here during the night and we do not have any mattresses or blankets. There are so many things that are needed to be done with the situation of our house,” Sio told the Village Voice team yesterday. 

“As you can see, we are using bed sheets as a tarpaulin to prevent the house from getting wet every time it rains. Even though there are sheets blocking the rain out, it does not guarantee that our house will not get wet because it would get wet when it rains.”

They used to live at Moamoa but relocated to their current location so that they can use their land.

“All the materials that we are using to build the house were the only things that we had. They are not new. There is no water supply here in this area that we live in and as you can see we use water gallons to store our water but it is never enough and it doesn’t rain every time. My husband would normally have to walk to the river to get water. When it rains, we have to ask our neighbours to fill up our buckets of water, but our neighbours houses are quite far.”

Sio highlighted the health concerns associated with the location of their lavatory close to their home when it would rain. 

“No one works in our family, so we have to adjust to how everything is done. There are so many things that we want to do but everything requires money. We have just started working on our plantation so we have yet to get money from our harvest. We have a relative that mostly helps us with things that we need,” he said.

To offer assistance, Help Samoa is offering free scheduled delivery to all Upolu Village Voice families.

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