Siapu Fa’atiuna is always happy.
The 45-year-old mother says that despite the challenges of every day life, one has to have a positive attitude to stay healthy and strong.
“Life in the village is very simple,” said the mother of seven from the village of Lepā.
“We all know that when we talk about rural areas, we are talking about the real Samoa.
“This is the heartland of tradition and culture.”
Siapu said she cannot imagine life in Samoa without the Village Councils.
“They play such an important role in the lives of people,” she said.
“I’m talking about my village here. Everyone lives peacefully, there are hardly any problems, our village is not overcrowded like some areas in Apia and we all get along nicely.
“We also have the opportunity to participate in village activities at anytime, and to learn more from each other.”
Siapu said the village activities is the training ground for her children – and other children in the village.
“We participate in village gatherings and we get to learn about a lot of issues going on.
“In terms of the environment, everyone loves our beautiful and natural surroundings. We have plenty of land to work on to provide food and to take care of our families.
“Everyone has their own land to develop and they love working.”
She added that matais are the pillars of Samoan society.
“They keep everything together so that everyone can live peacefully.”
Asked if there is anything that could perhaps be improved, she said the roads could be better.
“I mean if the town is developing and have nice roads, why not pay a visit here to see if we also have nice roads?
“We’re tired of hearing the saying that what’s good for Savai’i is also good for Upolu what’s good for Apia is also good for us here at Lepā Lotofaga and other villages.
“It would be nice to have a look at our water issues and road problems.”