Parents before everything else

By Aruna Lolani and Seia Soloi ,

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FAMILY COMES FIRST: Kolio Paniolo from the village of Leauva’a.

FAMILY COMES FIRST: Kolio Paniolo from the village of Leauva’a.

Meet Kolio Paniolo, an eighteen year old who is a good example for all the youth out there.

Coming from the village of Leauva’a, Kolio grew up knowing what his main priority is; his parents.

“We all know we won’t always be with our parents,” he said.

“I know I can’t live without my parents, I don’t know what I would do without them.”

“Eventhough it’s a fear whenever it crosses my mind but I know it’s a reason for me to make use of my time with them; to serve them right and cherish every moment with them.”

Kolio has other siblings, who are now working and have their own families so he’s the one looking after his parents.

“I didn’t finish school and when I dropped out of school, I started working at Frankie’s Supermarket here in Leauva’a.”

“It was only for a while though because my father got sick and for me at that time, I just felt that I need to stay home and look after my parents, my father especially because of his condition.”

“I was scared because I didn’t know what was going to happen to him and I didn’t want to waste any more time away from my parents.”

“That is why my main priority right now is making sure my parents have something to eat and to take care of them.”

“I’m not going to lie and say that I don’t miss working because I do, but that will always be there but my parents won’t.”

“So I do my best for them everyday. I go to get food from the plantation; you know taro and bananas are food they never want to miss.”

“And so far, this life has been good to me because I’m learning everyday how important the lands are to us, to our parents and I’m used to it.”

He went on to say “I go to church and I’m in the youth community and there are times when some youth members ask me to join them, maybe to roam around the village or somewhere else, you know that kind of life, it’s always tempting.” 

“But I always ask myself ‘will that kind of life feed your family?’ and I think that puts me back to my right senses.”

“So they go about with what they want to do and I just go home to my parents.”

“I don’t want to be like the other youth; I want to work hard to put food on the table for my family.”

“I don’t have any future plans yet but I’m sure of one thing, my parents and family comes first right now.”

© Samoa Observer 2016

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