Strong women make stronger families, villages

By Ilia L. Likou ,

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A PROUD SAMOAN LADY: Lupe Fuimaono, of Lauli’i.

A PROUD SAMOAN LADY: Lupe Fuimaono, of Lauli’i. (Photo: Ilia L. Likou)

Roles and responsibilities within a Samoan family have already been demarcated. Knowing where you fit in is extremely important.

That is the opinion of Lupe Fuimaono, of Lauli’i.

The mother told the Village Voice that the girls and young women of Samoa must know their roles for the betterment of the country.

“We play a vital role in our families and villages,” she said. 

“We are part of the fabric that makes Samoa the country it is. We are involved in the Village Councils; we all know that in the fa’aSamoa, there is a village of men chiefs council (fono matai), untitled men group (aumaga) and the village of women and girl (tinā ma tama’ita’i).”

“In Samoa, the ladies are referred to as ‘irons’ (auli) as they are the ones to straighten out any difficulties or problems within families.”

“Whenever we talk about tama’ita’i, then in your mind, hosting guests, performing the ava ceremony, and when we stand in the kitchen...why?” 

“We are the backbone of villages, churches and families.”

Lupe says that when women play their part, the men will do theirs.

“We are responsible in taking care of guests, and we are also the ones who look after the cleanliness and maintaining the beauty of the village.”

“We are the ones, who are responsible for taking care of our families, beautifying our villages, our churches and doing chores at home.” 

“We have a lot to do everyday not only in the village but we also have to take care of our family especially our children.”

Lupe strongly believes that a real Samoan lady must be respectful, caring and knows when to talk and when not to talk.

The role is tough.

 “We always take care of our children and families. We have a lot to do, but our family is our first priority.”

Lupe said she is proud of the women’s committee at Lauli’i.

 “Everything is going well in our village,” she said.

 “The work that we do in the village is nothing small. Most of our tasks are given to us from the chiefs of the village and we understand that they know what’s best for the people.”

Lupe said that ‘working together is the key to success’

“That means engaging and working together contributes to different achievements of individuals in our family.”

“We have a lot in the village but we always work together to fix them.”

“We believe in working together and having unity in our village. This makes us strong everyday.”

© Samoa Observer 2016

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