Get tested, fa’afafine lead by example

By Deidre Tautua-Fanene ,

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GET TESTED, PROMOTE AWARENESS: Some the beautiful fa'afafines that will be vying for the Miss Faafafine crown 2017.

GET TESTED, PROMOTE AWARENESS: Some the beautiful fa'afafines that will be vying for the Miss Faafafine crown 2017. (Photo: Deidre Tautua – Fanene)

The Samoa Fa’afāfine Association (S.F.A.) opened the opportunity for members of the public to be tested for H.I.V. and other sex-related diseases at the Samoa Tourism Fale yesterday.

This happened during an integrated outreach and testing program for S.T.I. and H.I.V./Aids with S.F.A’s health partners. The free clinic called on all fa’afafines and fa’afatamaloas to be tested.

S.F.A. has already conducted four of these outreach and testing programmes in rural Upolu and Savai’i. 

President of the S.F.A, So’oalo Roger Stanley, said the event was part of their weeklong programme leading up to the Miss Fa’afāfine next Friday.

“The theme is ‘Illuminate that Deity in you’ and deity is to bring out that goodness in them and that goddess can do anything,” said So’oalo.

“This is not just a beauty pageant to see who will take the crown but the whole concept is to promote and do awareness for everyone in terms of domestic violence, non-communicable disease and human rights.”

“The event today we want to let everyone know that it is always good to be informed about the status of our health so that we would know where to stand and what needs to be done.”

Vice President of the S.F.A. being tested as well.
Vice President of the S.F.A. being tested as well.
President of S.F.A. So’oalo Roger Stanley takes the lead on being tested for HIV.
President of S.F.A. So’oalo Roger Stanley takes the lead on being tested for HIV.

“We decided to start with us and as the leader of this association I went first because I wanted the fa’afafines to know that there is nothing to be worried about this is just the norms and it is very important to do this so that we would know where our health status is at.”

“So not only the pageant is for our charity work but also is a great platform to promote these important aspects that we feel is pertaining to us fa’afafine.”

“All in all we just want to be in a safer position to ensure that we are well informed of our status that we are healthy and healthy is happy and healthy is everything and just as long as we are aware individually that we are in a safe status.”

Speaking of the programme for the event So’oalo said the girls has a busy week ahead of them.

“But just like every other year we will start our week with a mass ceremony today at the Cathedral at 4pm,” he said.

Light refreshment will be served after and then we start our busy schedule on Monday with our visit to the Prison and Correction Services as one of our charity work.

© Samoa Observer 2016

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